Barcelona are ready to launch a bid worth up to £60million for Raphinha that could end Chelsea’s hopes of signing the Leeds United star.
Chelsea appeared to be on the brink of signing the Brazil international after agreeing a fee of £55m rising to £60m with Leeds on Monday.
Arsenal had been hopeful of signing the winger but Chelsea’s far superior offer left them leading the race for his signature.
While Raphinha is open to a move to Stamford Bridge, his first choice has been a move to Barcelona.
But with the Catalan giants under financial pressure, they have so far been unable to make a bid that meets Leeds’ demands.
However, The Times now report Barcelona are now ready to launch an offer worth £51m up front with a further £9m to follow in add-ons.
Raphinha’s agent, former Chelsea midfielder Deco, met with Barcelona president Joan Laporta on Wednesday where the deal was discussed.
Barcelona are now hopeful of getting the deal done – with Raphinha’s desire to move to the Camo Nou a key factor.
Barcelona find themselves in a position where they can fund fund the move after agreeing a deal on Thursday to sell 10 per cent of their La Liga TV rights for the next 24 years – a move that will see them net an initial figure of £179m.
While Barcelona is Raphinha’s preferred destination, the report adds there is also interest from an unnamed European club who are competing in next season’s Champions League.
Arsenal saw a bid of £35m rejected by Leeds last week.
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