The Athletic’s Phil Hay has revealed the latest on Leeds United star Raphinha amid recent transfer speculation linking him with a move away from Elland Road.
Reports have suggested that the likes of Liverpool are interested in making a move for the recently-capped Brazil international, and Hay has now indicated that the Whites will expect to receive offers for him.
He said: “Very hard to say. He’s bound to attract bids. All a case of what they are and when they arrive. Needless to say, no way in the world that Leeds would want to lose him in January.”
As is probably the case with another one of Leeds’ talismanic figures, Kalvin Phillips, it’s really now a case of when those bids arrive, and what those respective clubs will be looking to pay for them.
Had the Whites really pushed on from last season when they finished in the top-half of the table in their return back to the top-flight, then keeping the likes of Raphinha and Phillips for a while longer would seem much more plausible.
But if their current form continues, and they look short of contending for a place in Europe, then it will be inevitable that interest will increase – something former Arsenal striker Kevin Campbell has said about Raphinha in particular.
He said: “His stock is rising all of the time. Let’s not forget, there was already some interest in him last summer. Whether you like it or not, Leeds are not where they were 20 years ago. They are not what they once were.
“If one of the big boys comes in for him, Leeds will sell. They will sell. I think it is just a matter of time. I cannot see him being a Leeds player at the beginning of next season. If he continues to perform like this he will be gone.”
Hay’s claim is sure to worry fans about how much longer the Whites can keep hold of their talismanic winger. After all, it will be incredibly hard to replace his 19 goal involvements since arriving in Yorkshire.