Barcelona prioritising summer move for Raphinha

Barcelona will reportedly prioritise signing Raphinha as Ousmane Dembele’s replacement amid stiff competition from Chelsea and Liverpool.

According to a report by Spanish publication SPORT, Raphinha has become Barcelona’s priority target to replace Ousmane Dembele in the summer transfer window. The Leeds United winger is also a target for Premier League bigwigs Chelsea and Liverpool.

Raphinha has gone from strength to strength since joining Leeds United from Stade Rennais in October 2020. While the Brazilian international had already shown promising signs in his maiden campaign with the Whites, he has elevated his performance levels in the ongoing season, playing a pivotal role in keeping the West Yorkshire club away from the relegation zone.

The 25-year-old has amassed nine goals and three assists in 27 Premier League appearances thus far this term. But after a difficult season for Leeds United, Raphinha could embark on a new adventure in the summer transfer window. There is no shortage of interest in the player, with Barcelona, Chelsea, and Liverpool keen on signing him.

The interest from Barcelona stems from the uncertainties surrounding the future of Ousmane Dembele. The Frenchman will become a free agent in the summer transfer window if he does not sign a new contract between now and June 30.

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As for Chelsea, the Blues were once leading the race to sign Raphinha. But the latest sanctions imposed on Roman Abramovich prohibits Chelsea from signing new players, meaning it is highly unlikely that the west Londoners will secure the services of the Brazilian international until the sanctions are lifted.

Liverpool could do with a player like Raphinha, especially amid Mohamed Salah’s troubling contract situation. The 25-year-old could be a like-for-like replacement for the Egyptian if he leaves Liverpool, although the Reds are keen on reaching an agreement with their talisman over a bumper new contract.

According to SPORT, Barcelona will prioritise signing Raphinha, who looks favourably upon a move to Camp Nou in the summer transfer window. But with Liverpool also in the race, the Catalan giants need to be efficient in their pursuit of the Leeds United attacker.

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