Raphinha, an attacker with ties to Arsenal, may fetch as much as €100 million (£88.6 million) from Barcelona, according to reports. The Premier League’s top team is rumoured to have rekindled their interest in the Brazilian.
While recently the Gunners failed short in race to sign Mykhaylo Mudryk, who is now a Chelsea player. Raphinha, an ex-Rennes player who scored 11 goals to help Leeds United stay in the Premier League the previous season is now in the news again.
The Barcelona attacker was linked to moves to both Arsenal and Chelsea in the summer. During that time, Tottenham Hotspur was also said to be interested, but Barcelona ended up signing the 26-year-old.
And now the Ex-Leeds star is under a contract with Camp Nou club until 2027. Raphinha’s future in Catalonia is already in doubt because of his in consistent performances. Thus, Arsenal are said to have contacted Barcelona to explore the possibility of a transfer this month.
However, due to Raphinha’s contract predicament, Barcelona will not be forced into a cheap sale, and Sport reports that Arsenal will need to spend Mudryk-like sums to secure their man.
While recently The Gunners finally declined to pay Shakhtar’s €100 million (£88.6 million) asking price for Mudryk. but now they can reportedly anticipate receiving a similar offer for Raphinha.
Barcelona won’t sell Raphinha for cheap
According to the source, Barcelona president Joan Laporta will reject any lower bids for the former Rennes player, who has played in 23 games for La Blaugrana in his first season and has three goals and five assists to his credit.
Raphinha, though, has struggled to get starts lately under Xavi, and he has only been selected for the starting lineup in one of their previous seven La Liga games.
With Ousmane Dembele and Gavi favoured in the wide areas, the Brazil international received just a 12-minute run-out in Sunday’s 3-1 victory over Real Madrid in the Supercopa de Espana final.
After Gabriel Jesus’ knee surgery put him out until March and Reiss Nelson’s thigh injury, Arsenal is reportedly concentrating on signing a new attacker this month.
This season, the wide positions in the Arsenal starting lineup have been firmly established by Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli, with Fabio Vieira, Emile Smith Rowe, and Marquinhos serving as backup options.
In Sunday’s North London derby victory over Tottenham Hotspur, Smith Rowe, who had groyne surgery in the fall, made his first Premier League appearance since September. With the victory, Arsenal moved eight points ahead of Manchester City at the top of the standings.
After the game, when asked about missing out on Mudryk, Arteta reiterated his ambition to bolster the team over the offseason, saying in a press conference:
“We have excellent players.”
“We want to improve our squad in this transfer window and when I say we, myself, the coaching staff, the staff, the players, the board, and ownership. We are all in this together, but we will do the deals that we can do and that we believe is right for the football club.”
Next Sunday will see Arsenal play Manchester United at the Emirates in their 19th Premier League match, while Raphinha can be certain that he will start for Barcelona in their Copa del Rey last-16 match against lower-tier AD Cueta on Thursday.
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