It turns out Raphinha is actually going to Barcelona, not Chelsea. Leeds United had initially accepted a €60 million bid from the London club to send the Brazilian winger but the player wanted to only go to Barcelona according to Fabrizio Romano. Leeds initially stated they had already accepted a bid and would not budge from it but it turns out they’ve walked back on that approach.
Raphinha to Barcelona, here we go! Full agreement reached with Leeds after today’s bid accepted: €58m fixed fee plus add-ons up to total €67m package. #FCB— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 12, 2022
Raphinha only wanted Barça since February and he’s set to sign until June 2027, time for documents and contracts. pic.twitter.com/JtLXCXa03e
It’s an interesting move for the La Liga club, which is also looking to pursue Bayern Munich star Robert Lewandowski. Barcelona is also looking to offload Frenkie de Jong’s contract. It’s hard to know whether Leeds was unaware of Raphinha’s desire to join Barcelona or whether they felt Chelsea’s offer was the best they would get at the time and took it.
On the Chelsea side, this is a tough look for the club. Clearly, they weren’t able to get a deal done with the player after the initial fee was accepted because the player didn’t want to come there. We’ll see how the ensuing investigation plays out but for now Barcelona has added a talented young winger at a decent price point.