Leeds United’s Brazilian winger Raphinha has reportedly rejected the latest contract renewal offer from the club amid interest from Barcelona.
According to a report by Brazilian outlet UOL, Raphinha has rejected Leeds United’s latest advancements regarding an extension on his existing contract with the club. The 25-year-old is currently contracted with the Whites until 2024.
The Brazilian international joined Leeds United from in a deal worth €18.60 million in October 2020. He did not take long to settle down in English football, scoring six times and assisting nine goals in his first season in the Premier League. Raphinha started attracting interest from bigger English clubs after just a year.
But he chose to stay at Elland Road and has put in a much-improved effort in his second English top-flight season. The right-winger has already bettered his goalscoring tally from last season. He currently has nine Premier League goals under his belt this term and three assists on top of that.
Raphinha’s trickery and pace with the ball at his feet make him a tough player to handle for opposition defences. And his goalscoring exploits on top of that have alerted various clubs across Europe. Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Liverpool have all been recently linked with the Brazilian winger, who reportedly has an €84 million release clause in his Leeds contract.
The 25-year-old, however, wants the Whites to reduce the value of his release clause to facilitate a possible future transfer. But Leeds are unwilling to accept his demands as they believe that Raphinha’s superlative on-field performances could fetch them a decent transfer fee in the future.
They are reportedly ready to nearly double the winger’s current wages, but he has not accepted the offer so far. The contract negotiations have completely stalled after the club’s initial refusal to bow to Raphinha’s demands. And with Barcelona hot on the player’s trails, Leeds could have a tough time keeping hold of him.
With the summer transfer window fast approaching, Leeds could play the waiting game to see if they could convince any interested clubs to trigger the existing release clause. However, Raphinha’s entourage might want to enter negotiations again and find a solution before the end of the season, especially with Barcelona keen on bolstering their attack with his signature.