Raphinha to Chelsea? Will it Work?

Chirag Gupta
By Chirag Gupta
7 Min Read

It will be fair to call that Leeds United are having a fairly poor season and the only bright side is the consistent performance of their Brazilian winger, Raphinha. The Brazilian star is one of the best players this season and has been in news for the whole season.

Why Raphinha wants to move?

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He signed a four-year contract in 2020 when he joined Leeds, and now is looking to make a big move as he reportedly has snubbed a new contract offered by Leeds United. He is looking for offers amidst many European giants eyeing a move for the next big Brazilian star in the making.

Despite Leeds poor run in the Premier League, Raphinha has managed to prove his mettle in the league with 10 goal contributions and has been a nightmare to the defenders he has faced. There were rumours of him leaving in January with Bayern Munich being already submitting an offer but it was nothing more than a rumour as no reliable source confirmed the initiation of the talks. But this summer could be the time when Raphinha actually moves as many sources close to Leeds and the player himself are indicating towards the same, with the Brazilian snubbing a new contract by Leeds.

Chelsea – The Ideal Destination?

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Chelsea are the World Champions but the fact that they are not getting outputs from their attacking talents just can not be overlooked. Thomas Tuchel, since his arrival, has not been able to get the finishing output from his attacking talents with defence stepping up every time to help them attain glory day after day. Now, there have been serious talks in the Chelsea boardroom to address the situation and Roman Abramovich has assured full backing to Tuchel. Thomas Tuchel has till now made any of his preferred signings at Chelsea as technically Lukaku was also a signing more wanted by the board. Chelsea this year do not have anyone player who they can rely to start every game in the attacking third. Mason Mount has the most goal contributions this season and with Tuchel having to move into a back 4 in the upcoming season, he will drop into the midfield, making an extra place in the attacking trio.

With Chelsea opening their recruitment vision, Raphinha has been linked to a move to Stamford Bridge. Chelsea board are also huge admirers of the Brazilian, who they are scouting since his Rennes days when they brought in Edouard Mendy.

How can Raphinha contribute at Chelsea?

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Only 25, Raphinha is entering his prime years and thus the next move will be a big one both for the club and himself. Being Brazilian he has the flair which they are well appreciated for and this is something Chelsea do miss in their attacking set-up. Chelsea’s attackers are fairly criticized for their inability to take one-on-ones with their opposition which decreases the chances created ratio massively. Lukaku and Havertz have not been provided with enough quality balls in the box to score and Raphinha with his left foot can be very lethal on the right side.

In no surprise, Raphinha leads any other Chelsea player in per 90 minutes goal contributions and attacking threats. He is not only effective with pin-point crosses but also has the ability to take shots outside the box. He can score some from outside the box, something that Chelsea really call for every game week. Hakim Ziyech is definitely a similar kind of player who has a strong left foot, but he misses the flair and agility to go into one-on-ones with the defenders. Raphinha has 2.2 successful dribbles per 90 in this season, with a team that is not even doing well collectively.

Tuchel demands a high work rate from his attacking line and playing under Bielsa, one just can not go wrong with this one. He averages 1.5 tackles per match, a stat will instantly put a smile on Tuchel’s face. Raphinha also has some great finishing from the dead balls, which he could really use at Stamford Bridge, giving Chelsea extra options with the likes of Mason, Alonso and Ziyech.

Is it Practically Possible to Land the Brazilian?

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Definitely, Chelsea are not worried about the finances, with news of one or more attacking players looking to leave in the summer. A transition is definitely needed in the attacking third and Tuchel might actually have a good analysis for the Brazilian. However, Chelsea will have to act quickly as they will face competition from other European giants like Bayern, Real Madrid, Barcelona and their English compatriots, Liverpool.

Convincing Raphinha to be a part of their project will be crucial as a move for him at this stage is career-defining. Also, cracking a deal with Leeds will also not be easy considering the history both the clubs hold. In case Tuchel misses on Dembele, Raphinha could be Chelsea’s main target in the summer.

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