Transfer News: Tottenham handed a major boost in their pursuit of Raphinha
Tottenham Hotspur have some much-needed wind in their sails now as they hope to strike a deal with Leeds United for their star man Raphinha. Latest reports suggest that Barcelona, who are one of the major clubs courting him, may not be in a position to land the Brazilian winger.
According to The Athletic (Subscription Required) [h/t Football London], Barcelona’s current financial woes – which involve debts amounting to well over £1 billion, coupled with constant scrutiny on their recruitment and expenditure could prove decisive. Once a club where no transfer seemed impossible, that is far from the case now at the Camp Nou.
Barca’s loss is Spurs’ gain, who view Raphinha as one of their top targets for the summer. While Leeds are resigned to losing their prized asset, they are believed to stand firm and will only entertain offers in the region of £60-70 million.
Leeds were involved in a relegation scrap last season, achieving safety only on the final day of the season. It is no coincidence that Raphinha’s links to Barcelona intensified when Leeds looked destined for the drop.
However, Premier League status is secure for now at Elland Road and Raphinha has two years left on his deal, meaning that Leeds are in no rush to sell or under any obligation to let go for a fee they don’t deem to be enough.
For Spurs, there is one more aspect in this equation to consider though, and that’s their nemesis and arch-rivals Arsenal. According to The Telegraph, the Gunners are also one of the many clubs plotting a move for Raphinha.
Can Tottenham fend off Arsenal to make a statement signing like Raphinha?
The two clubs don’t just share the same city and a historic rivalry, but seemingly transfer targets too. There’s a lot to take into account here, because one deal is likely to affect the other.
Spurs and Arsenal also share an interest in Everton’s Richarlison, also another Brazilian superstar. The striker is understood to not favour a move to Arsenal due to his concerns of being left on the bench but is open to a move to Spurs and even Chelsea, who are also keeping tabs on the Toffees No. 7.
Football.London suggests that if Spurs do sign Raphinha, that would close the door on a deal for Richarlison as it’s believed to be one or the other, not both.
Given the players Antonio Conte has at his disposal, Richarlison doesn’t seem like a priority. They have got Harry Kane, Heung-min Son and Dejan Kulusevski – arguably one of the best front-threes in the Premier League.
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Raphinha however, can add a lot of value. He can play anywhere on the right hand side of midfield and his intensity makes him just the kind of player Conte would love to have. While Leeds’ expected valuation is not a small figure, it seems fair given Raphinha’s meteoric rise and current stature,