An update has emerged on Newcastle United and their interest in Raphinha in the summer transfer window…
Northern Echo reporter Scott Wilson has claimed that PIF have already held discussions over a potential deal to sign the Brazilian.
The Magpies are looking at the Whites star as an alternative option to Moussa Diaby as it seems unlikely that they will be able to snap the Frenchman up ahead of the 2022/23 campaign.
He tweeted: “NUFC hold an initial round of talks with Leeds over Raphinha – after Bayer Leverkusen spell out their determination to keep hold of Moussa Diaby this summer…”
The accompanying article states that the club would be willing to pay up to £40m to sign Jesse Marsch’s key attacker, but it remains to be seen whether or not that would get a deal done.
PIF can land Newcastle a better version of one of their former stars by snapping up the ex-Rennes gem. Journalist Seb Stafford-Bloor once called Raphinha “magic” and said that he “raises the temperature” by using his left foot.
The same could have been said of Hatem Ben Arfa during his time on Tyneside. He was capable of scoring wonder goals and was known for silky skills with his left foot, which left supporters getting excited whenever he shifted the ball onto his favoured side.
However, the end product was not always there as he managed 13 goals and 12 assists in 83 Premier League appearances throughout his career. He struggled to score and assist goals on a regular basis and that stopped him from being one of the best players in the division as he did not have the final touch to make the most of his dazzling play.
Raphinha, on the other hand, has shown that he has the quality to make a big impact in the final third. In 65 top-flight outings for Leeds, he has scored 17 goals and provided 12 assists, which means that he has recorded more Premier League goal contributions than Ben Arfa despite the Frenchman playing almost 20 more matches.
These statistics suggest that the Leeds wizard, who turns 26 in December, would be a better version of the former Toon number 10. He has the X-Factor to get fans off their seats and has shown that he has the finishing and passing to make them cheer goals as well, cutting in on his left foot like the now-Lille man used to do for the Magpies.