Raphinha admits rejecting Chelsea to follow Barcelona ‘dream’


Raphinha has revealed that he was determined to seal a transfer to Barcelona this summer, insisting no other offer could have compared to his ‘dream’ move.

The winger was strongly expected to leave Leeds United for Barça for most of 2022, with the Blaugrana agreeing to cut the price should the Whites be relegated from the Premier League.

However, Leeds managed to survive the final day of the 2021/22 season as Raphinha scored in their decisive 2-1 win at Brentford, and so the asking price was increased.

Barcelona were always confident of signing Raphinh, although a rival bid of €65m from Chelsea and interest from Arsenal and Tottenham threatened to scupper their bid.

But in an interview with La Vanguardia, the Brazil international said he is only focused on a move to Barcelona.

When asked if he rejected the offer from Chelsea, Raphinha said: “Yes, because my dream was to wear the Barcelona shirt, which is a club I have followed since I was very young. Since Ronaldinho arrived. With him, I started to understand a bit more history club I wanted to be a part of.

“So that dream, those desires, were stronger than any other proposal no matter how much it was financially.

Raphinha scored his first goal for Barcelona in the 3-0 win at Sevilla last weekend, although he is yet to make his Champions League debut after being an unused substitute against Viktoria Plzeň in midweek.

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