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Chelsea swoop in to steal Arsenal’s Raphinha deal

Chelsea are reportedly now in the best position to sign Arsenal target Raphinha.

What’s the word?

That’s according to David Ornstein, who tweeted an update that stated that Chelsea are close to agreeing a fee upwards of £55m.

Arsenal had shown an interest but had seen progress stall over the fee.

Now it seems that they and Barcelona are both being ruled out due to financial restrictions, allowing Chelsea to swoop in.

The journalist for The Athletic said: “Chelsea close to agreeing fee north of £55m with Leeds for Raphinha but not done yet. #CFC now best placed with #LUFC & 25yo as long-term favourites Barcelona can’t afford it at present + Arsenal not currently at required price.”

Supporters will be gutted

Raphinha would’ve completed Arsenal’s sensational Brazilian front three, joining up with Gabriel Martinelli and the imminent arrival of Gabriel Jesus.

However, he now leaves Leeds to strengthen a rival, an eventuality that will no doubt leave supporters fuming as the Gunners would’ve had their eyes set on bridging the gap between them and the top four.

Incredibly highly rated, the 25-year-old would certainly have improved Mikel Arteta’s side. His 11 league goals in a relegation-battling team would have put him joint-first amongst Arsenal’s team, alongside top scorer Bukayo Saka.

Not only this, but his 6.97 average SofaScore rating is also impressive for a winger, and led teammate Dan James to label him a “magician”.

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Who was Arsenal's first signing in the 2021 summer transfer window?

It is clear that Arsenal prioritised a striker this window, hence the reported £45m fee for Jesus. This represents a huge financial outlay for Arteta, and yet the forward only scored eight times this season in the league.

Naturally, he was often played on the right wing by Pep Guardiola, which would explain his further nine assists.

It just begs the question as to whether funds could have been better spent elsewhere in order to afford them both, as Jesus clearly cannot be relied upon to score a bagful of goals.

Raphinha also sits in the 90th percentile for progressive passes, and boasts 3.67 shot-creating actions per 90. Supplying the incoming striker, this Brazilian certainly would have helped acclimatise Jesus at the Emirates.

Chelsea sat four points above Arsenal last season, and despite showing strong signs early on in the transfer window, missing out on this transfer will leave supporters rather gutted.

AND, in other news: “New bid…”: Romano relays Arsenal transfer development, supporters will be buzzing.

Article title: Chelsea swoop in to steal Arsenal’s Raphinha deal

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