Pundit Michael Owen has waxed lyrical about the performance of Leeds winger Raphinha on Sunday – and reckons the Brazilian is capable of playing for any club in world football.
The Brazilian superstar has been one of the Premier League’s best players this season, despite Leeds’ lowly position. Indeed, Raphinha has scored eight goals, chipping in with one assist from his 17 appearances so far. It’s that kind of form that highlights him as a transfer target for some of Europe’s top clubs.
Leeds though remain determined to keep him and are reportedly looking at rewarding their star man with a new deal.
Owen, however, was an interested observer as Leeds put Burnley to the sword 3-1 on Sunday. Leeds’ goals came from Jack Harrison, Stuart Dallas and Dan James; the Whites, for once, not relying on any Raphinha magic.
Nonetheless, Leeds almost opened the scoring from a piece of brilliance from Raphinha. Spotting Clarets keeper Wayne Hennessey off his line, his drive from the halfway line had the Wales keeper scrambling back and his relief was palpable as Raphinha’s shot grazed the top of the crossbar.
Raphinha has ‘that vision’
Speaking about the effort and Raphinha’s efforts in general, Owen made a big claim about the Leeds star.
“I mean, it’s a player I absolutely love,” Owen told Premier League Productions. “He’s got that about him. He has got that skill. He has got that vision.
Raphinha could be staying put at Leeds
Raphinha's comments could hint at him staying at Leeds.
“The technique is perfect. Just again, it skims the top of the crossbar. But he is a player that can play in any team, for me.”
Among Raphinha’s admirers are Liverpool, but a report on Monday claims they are now looking elsewhere after coming to a big realisation about the player.
Bielsa delighted with Leeds win
Victory for Leeds, however, it came about, was all important against the Clarets.
It was a huge three points as defeat would have left them just three points off the relegation zone. Instead, they are now eight points clear.
Speaking to Sky Sports post-match, Bielsa said: “Yes it was very necessary to get the win and it was a relief for us to be able to get it.”
“We dominated the game, created danger, they created not too much danger against us.
“But the game was very difficult to sustain. They managed to make it very difficult.
“I thought it was going to be difficult to go again [after Burnley’s equaliser] but we managed to get back and dominate the game again.
“We played a lot like how I want us to play.”