As one of only five players currently residing in the Premier League’s bottom half with at least five goals and five assists to their name this season, Raphinha has emerged as pretty perfect for Leeds and Liverpool. The Reds are known to be interested in his services, but the Daily Mirror have some bad news.
They are adamant that Leeds ‘are under no pressure’ to sell someone they signed for £17m only last summer. They are in no financial trouble and see the Brazilian ‘playing a big part’ in their future.
Raphinha himself is described as ‘happy’ at Elland Road, having made friends with Portuguese-speaking Helder Costa and the Francophone Patrick Bamford. With no buyout clause in a contract that has more than three years left to run, the ball is in Leeds’ court and they don’t intend on giving it back.
Manchester United are mentioned briefly in that story as potential suitors, but their transfer efforts seem more focused on procuring a centre-half or striker in the summer.
In a story based on quotes from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer – “we’re always looking at better players, of course we are” – a couple of throwaway lines could offer an insight into his current mindset.
He is said to be ‘an admirer of Tottenham figurehead Harry Kane’ while still being ‘in touch with Borussia Dortmund marksman Erling Haaland’. We hope you were sat down for that.
Hardly groundbreaking stuff, of course: football manager quite likes two of the best strikers in the world. It would also render this list sadly pointless. But it is at least interesting to see the two mentioned in a presumably serious manner.
GINI IN THE BOTTLE
The future of Georginio Wijnaldum remains uncertain. Liverpool should do all they can to keep him but the midfielder might have other ideas at this stage of his career.
Barcelona were thought to be the main interested party but it is FCInter1908 who fill us in on Antonio Conte’s movements in “a high-profile, free transfer market”.
Those quotes come from Claudio Raimondi of SportMediaset, with fellow journalist Sandro Sabatini adding that “Inter already have a handshake with Wijnaldum” from last year.