Leeds United

Leeds United

Premier League • England

Raphinha order of preference emerges after Arsenal submit first formal bid, with Leeds stance reflected

Raphinha, Leeds United winger, during Premier League clash against Everton

Arsenal have made a formal offer to sign Brazilian winger Raphinha from Leeds United, whose response has been clear, according to a report.

Raphinha looks likely to leave Leeds United this summer after their narrow escape from relegation. The former Rennes man envisages playing for a higher-level club. Indeed, he has been heavily linked with La Liga powerhouses Barcelona.

But there have been difficulties for the two clubs to meet in the middle over his asking price. Therefore, Leeds have been bracing themselves to field Premier League enquiries.

Raphinha has been closely linked with Arsenal in recent days. Reports in Spain have suggested they are near to completing his signing.

However, Leeds were in turn warned by one pundit to drive his price tag up if selling to a domestic rival.

It appears they will be setting out a strong stance after all. According to David Ornstein of The Athletic, Leeds have now received a first official offer from Arsenal for Raphinha.

Contact began on Tuesday, before a bid was made in the evening. However, it fell short of Leeds’ valuation, so is likely to have been rejected.

Leeds will not stand in Raphinha’s way given his wish to leave and their belief he would not sign a contract extension beyond 2024. But they will only agree to a deal on their terms.

Therefore, Arsenal will have to come again for the 25-year-old. What’s more, they face competition from two London rivals.

Ornstein reminds that Chelsea and Tottenham are also battling for his signature. Raphinha’s order of preference would be Barcelona first, then Chelsea, then Arsenal and finally Tottenham.

Hence, Arsenal may have ground to make up in convincing the player. Yet they are major admirers and do stand a chance of signing him.

Raphinha could help Arsenal cross top-four finishing line

Any of his other three options would have Champions League football on offer. Arsenal, on the other hand, just missed out for the upcoming season but are aspiring towards that territory again.

Leeds stand firm on huge Raphinha deal breaker

Leeds United won’t be moved from their stance on the Raphinha transfer as Barcelona want to pay in instalments

The addition of a player like Raphinha could help their chances. That said, they seem quite well stocked in the final third at present.

A new centre-forward must arrive, which could be Gabriel Jesus. Then, on the wings where Raphinha plays, they have Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli, Emile Smith Rowe and now Fabio Vieira.

The Leeds man is a high-quality option, though, so would have a good chance of starting for them. The addition of further creativity – Raphinha has scored 17 goals and added 11 assists in 66 Leeds games – could make them more dynamic.

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