Sunday, January 29, 2023

Arsenal Amongst Likely Destinations For This Unsettled Versatile Brazilian Star

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Subhayan Dutta
Subhayan used to be the Featured Columnist at The 4th Official. Completely immersed in football and almost all other sports on planet.

According to reports, Barcelona midfielder Rafinha wants his way out of the club as it is becoming increasingly clear every week that he doesn’t stand anywhere in the grand plans of Ernesto Valverde next season.

The 24-year-old has been one of those rare species of La Masia product who made to the first team but failed to make any real impression whatsoever. Despite starting the season in the first eleven, he has been slowly pushed down the pecking order before a series of injuries hardly let him play in the second half of the season.

He managed to score seven goals and two assists in 18 La Liga appearances. His failure could partially also be because of Luis Enrique’s decision to play him at times as the right back where Sergi Roberto, yet another La Masia product, failed miserably. And now with Nelson Semedo taking that position, Rafinha’s chances are more than over.

The Brazilian international has hardly made an impression in the national side as compared to his brother Thiago Alcantara. Since making his debut in 2015, the player has played only twice in national colours. And now with World Cup coming up next, this season would be his only chance to make any sort of impression whatsoever.

Here are the three destinations for Rafinha-

Liverpool- Following reports linking Neymar heavily with Paris Saint-Germain, Barcelona’s pursuit of Phillipe Coutinho has expectantly gained pace. The Liverpool man has been quite indispensable for the Reds in the past few seasons but with Neymar’s current development, the Reds are hardly expected to be able to hold on to him. Though they would get a huge amount of money in return, reports have emerged of Barcelona including Rafinha as a part of the deal.

Arsenal- The North London club has been linked with a move for Rafinha for months now with recent reports claiming that the Brazilian has been even offered to the club. Arsene Wenger is desperate to add one more midfielder to his side as they prepare for life in Europa League, where they will play many more games apart from the domestic league.

Chelsea- The Blues have just lost Nemanja Matic to Manchester United and though Rafinha wouldn’t be a like for like replacement for the towering midfielder, he could definitely fit into Antonio Conte’s two-man midfield setup. With the likes of Tiemoue Bakayoko and N’Golo Kante doing the hard work, the likes of Fabregas and Rafinha could provide the creative touch for them.

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