Tactical Insights

Barcelona conditions for Raphinha sale make left winger signing unlikely

Barcelona are not flush for cash this summer, even if from the club’s side they continue to maintain they can get back within their salary limit, and big signings will require big sales. One of the two priorities for the Blaugrana this summer is the left wing position, but that will only be possible if Raphinha leaves the club.

It seems clear that Lamine Yamal will be the starter on the right side of attack for Barcelona, leaving Raphinha without a natural home in the starting XI. He was effective on the left during the last third of the season for Xavi Hernandez, and could return there, but neither is it his preferred position.

The Brazilian winger still does not have an agent, and does not want to leave Barcelona. MD say that they do not plan to sell him either, unless an offer of around €90m comes in. The Catalan paper say that a bid of €80m was rejected last summer, and unless that quantity arrives at their door, they will not consider a sale. If it did, then they would speak with Raphinha to see his stance on a move, at which point the signings of Nico Williams or Luis Diaz look more realistic.

If indeed that is the case, the only potential destination would be Saudi Arabia. Raphinha’s stock has not increased since he joined Barcelona from Leeds United for around €60m, and he is now two years older too. Raphinha, who has three years left on his deal, holds all the cards, as from his point of view, he is likely to play unless someone in the left-wing position arrives, and if the report is accurate, that will not happen unless he gives the green light on an exit.

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