Leeds United have told Serie A side Udinese that their pursuit of Rodrigo de Paul is likely to have come to an end, with the Whites set to complete a deal for Rennes forward Raphinha.
The Whites have already agreed terms over a deal with Rennes to take Raphinha on a permanent deal, whilst also agreeing personal terms with the 23-year-old, who will arrive at Elland Road on a five-year deal pending a medical and a work permit, according to Fabrizio Romano.
It now seems like Raphinha’s arrival will signal the end to the Whites’ long-term interest in de Paul, with Leeds having been consistently linked with a move for the 26-year-old throughout the course of the transfer window. Marcelo Bielsa’s side have informed Udinese that they consider the move to be off at this stage, according to Romano’s tweet.
Bielsa has been keen on adding some extra firepower and creativity to his squad before the window closes, and de Paul having scored seven goals and registered six assists from attacking midfield last term in Serie A (via Sofascore) looked like he would fit the bill for the Whites.
However, it now looks like Leeds will instead settle for bringing in Raphinha, who does play in a slightly different forward role to de Paul but also has plenty of attacking output to offer, hitting five goals and providing three assists in 22 Ligue 1 appearances last term, as per Sofascore.
Leeds missing out on de Paul would be a shame with the 26-year-old looking like a player who would be ideal for the way the Whites set up, capable of providing moments of magic in the final third that could have helped them edge tight matches with his 3.3 key passes per game. The club though do not want to over-spend this window so by bringing in Raphinha they will have to hope he is equally as efficient in the last third – he boasts 1.5 key passes per game.
The Whites have had a decent transfer window and have backed Bielsa as much as they can, and you would back any player arriving at Elland Road to thrive under his coaching given the way his side are playing at the moment.
Raphinha is an exciting addition with not much known about the 23-year-old, but Leeds have a coach who can extract the best from the player so he could well excel and prove to be a bargain addition.
Leeds fans, do you think the club has made the right decision opting for Raphinha? Comment below!
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