Raphinha has told a Brazil press conference – as per the Evening Post – that he is still very open to remaining at Leeds this summer. Reports emerged earlier this week, doubting Barcelona could afford him.

Raphinha, 25, is being strongly linked with a move to the Nou Camp. But Phil Hay reports on The Athletic website that Barca might actually struggle to afford him. Fabrizio Romano says Leeds want an up-front fee.

So, it is up in the air whether Raphinha stays, or leaves Elland Road. He has a contract in Yorkshire until June 2024. He is keen on a move to Barcelona. Of course, Deco – his agent – played for Barca.

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Speaking ahead of Monday’s clash against Japan, Raphinha spoke about his future to Leeds and a move to Barcelona. He responded by ‘grinning’, according to the YEP – delivers his verdict.

“If I stay or leave, I’ll do my best, look for my space and I’ll try to be well for the World Cup. “Then I go on vacation. I have a contract with Leeds until 2024, my future is in the hands of Deco and Leeds.

“My mind is on the national team, on the game and also on my vacation, we need a vacation. I have a contract with Leeds and this issue is resolved by my manager, when something is right, he sends [it to] me.”

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Raphinha open to remaining at Leeds amid Barcelona reports

The chances are that Raphinha still goes. But if it is to go to Barcelona, then Deco’s old side will have to get rid of a number of players in order to improve their financial position. Starting with, Ousmane Dembele.

The likes of Clement Lenglet, Memphis Depay, Samuel Umtiti, Marton Braithwaite and plenty more are being linked with moves to the Premier League. Leeds are even said to be looking at Sergino Dest.

Do that, and they could be in a position to get him. Raphinha certainly has the quality to play for Barcelona – just ask Diego Llorente. But is Raphinha a priority for Barca? They have other targets.

The likes of Robert Lewandowski and Chelsea duo Cesar Azpilicueta and Marcos Alonso might be prioritised. There is growing hope, then, that Leeds might end up keeping Raphinha if Barcelona cannot afford him.

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