Barcelona all set to sign Brazilian winger Raphinha
Barcelona has reached an agreement in principle to sign Brazilian winger Raphinha from Premier League side Leeds United, both clubs announced on Wednesday. Financial details were not disclosed but Spanish media reported that Barcelona will pay €58 million in a fee that could go up to 68 million with the agreed add-ons.
“FC Barcelona and Leeds United Football Club have reached an agreement in principle for the transfer of Raphael Dias Belloli, Raphinha, pending the player passing his medical,” Barcelona said in a statement. Chelsea and Arsenal both tried to make a late push in an effort to sign the player, but the Brazil international chose to join Barcelona, who finished distant second to cham-pions Real Madrid in La Liga last season. Raphinha scored 17 goals in 67 games in all competitions for Leeds after joining the Yorkshire club in 2020 from Stade Rennais.
The 25-year-old previously also played for Sporting CP. Raphinha has taken the front seat to be Brazil’s rightwinger at this year’s WorldCup in Qatar, starting seven of the last nine games of his national team and chipping in with three goals and two assists since being called for the first time by coach Tite in October 2021. Raphinha becomes manager Xavi Hernandez’s third signing of the transfer window following the arrivals of Franck Kessie and Andreas Christensen on free transfers. Forward Ousmane Dembele, whose Barcelona contract expired last month, joined the team on Tuesday and is expected to sign a new deal with the Catalan giants. Dembele’s potential contract extension would boost Barcelona’s attacking options as the team also look to sign Poland striker Robert Lewandowski from Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich. Dembele performed well this past season after refusing to leave on a loan.
Club president Joan Laporta did not answer questions on whether Barcelona were still trying to sign Lewandowski. Laporta said recently that Barcelona had made an offer for the striker. Barca are recovering from a dire financial situation.