Leeds United winger Raphinha will be allowed to leave Elland Road for a far more modest fee that many are led to believe, according to one pundit.
The winger has been a huge success in West Yorkshire since moving from Rennes in a £17m deal. That October 2020 transfer has bore some real fruit for Leeds, with Raphinha scoring 16 goals in 61 appearances for the club. And that tally includes an impressive 10 goals in 29 Premier League appearances this season alone.
Indeed, such has been his success in England that Raphinha is now one of the first names on Brazil’s team sheet. To that end, three goals in seven appearances for la Selecao has further underlined his qualities and raised his profile further.
As such, it’s little surprise to see Raphinha catching the eye of several big-name suitors.
Bayern Munich were the first to linked, with reports just before the January window claiming a move to Bavaria was on.
While denials soon materialised, Raphinha has since reportedly emerged as a target for Liverpool, Chelsea and West Ham.
However, the biggest threat has arguably come from Barcelona. The LaLiga giants have made no secret of their admiration for the winger, with one report even stating he’s already agreed personal terms with Xavi’s side.
Furthermore, transfer guru Fabrizio Romano has done little to dampen the rumours.
Barcelona rumours linger
However, one issue that appears to dampen Barca’s prospects is the price Raphinha will fetch.
Given his importance to the Leeds side, they, understandably, won’t want to let him leave on the cheap. As such, reports claim Barcelona will need to double their reported opening £29m offer to land him this summer.
Finances, however, are tight at Barcelona. Their money issues are widely reported. And shopping in the free-transfer market has become a bit of theme in recent windows in Catalonia.
That said, pundit Danny Mills reckons Leeds will actually let Raphinha leave for a much lower fee that reported. In addition, he suggests Raphinha cannot yet be classed as a ‘superstar’ and that Leeds will be lucky to get £50m.
Raphinha ‘not yet a superstar’
“I don’t think he would be a superstar signing,” Mills told Football Insider.
“Not as far as Barcelona superstar signings go, he certainly would not be anywhere near that.”
Mills added: “He’s a very good player, we know that. I’m sure there will be Premier League clubs chasing his signature and maybe some European clubs.
“But until they come in with some firm bids, we’re talking £50million-plus.
Brazil legend Ronaldinho wants Raphinha at Barcelona
Ronaldinho wants Leeds United winger Raphinha to join Barcelona this summer
“There’s probably better value for money out there at the moment. You can probably get someone a little bit more proven for £50million.”
Either way, it promises to be a huge summer ahead for Leeds.
Raphinha isn’t the only player reportedly earmarked for a big-money exit. Indeed, more speculation this weekend surrounds the future of Kalvin Phillips.