Speaking on a recent episode of The Phil Hay Show, The Athletic journalist suggested that, should Raphinha go on to secure his widely expected transfer to Barcelona in the coming weeks, Victor Orta could reignite his interest in the Club Brugge winger – with whom the Whites were linked with a £25m move for a little under 12 months ago – this summer.
Concerning Leeds’ potential interest in the 22-year-old, Hay said: “It wouldn’t surprise me at all – if Raphinha left – if they went back in for Noa Lang because they do really like Noa Lang and they did like him last summer… that could happen.”
Considering just how impressive Lang has been in Belgium this season, in addition to the fact that Raphinha looks set to depart Elland Road in the very near future, it would appear an extremely wise move for Orta to reignite his pursuit of the Netherlands international in the coming weeks.
Indeed, over his 37 Jupiler Pro League appearances this term, the £19.8m-rated forward was in exceptional form for Brugge, scoring seven goals, registering 12 assists and creating 19 big chances for his teammates, as well as taking an average of 2.0 shots, making 1.9 key passes and completing 1.7 dribbles per game.
These metrics saw the £20k-per-week talent who Graham Smyth dubbed “exciting” and an “assist machine” average a quite extraordinary SofaScore match rating of 7.20, ranking him as his club’s joint fifth-best performer in the Belgian top-flight – playing a key role in Brugge’s title-winning campaign.
For comparison, over Raphinha’s 35 Premier League appearances this season, the £60m sensation scored 11 goals, provided three assists and created ten big chances, in addition to taking an average of 2.5 shots, making 1.9 key passes and completing 1.8 dribbles per fixture – returns that saw the 25-year-old average a SofaScore match rating of 6.97.
As such, while the step-up between the Jupiler Pro League and the Premier League should not be underestimated, it would nevertheless appear that, should Raphinha indeed move onto pastures new this summer, Lang would be something of a perfect replacement for the Brazil international – leading us to believe that Orta simply must make a move for the 22-year-old in the coming months.