Thursday, March 30, 2023

Arsenal Set Sights On This Leeds United Winger As Pepe Replacement: Arteta Should Get Him On Board

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Pratik Das
The youngest member of The 4th Official and an ardent Premier League fan who is basically obsessed with scouting young talents and is consumed by the idea of finding the perfect number 10.

Recent reports from The Telegraph state that Arsenal are keen on signing Leeds United winger Raphinha in the ongoing transfer window as Mikel Arteta looks set to add to his attacking options ahead of the 2022/23 season.

The Gunners have not held any official talks with Leeds yet, but the Brazilian international is on their summer wish list.

When asked in a recent interview about his future, the winger told reporters, “The next game, against Japan.”

“Then I go on vacation. I have a contract with Leeds until 2024, my future is in the hands of Deco (his agent) and Leeds, I have my mind on the national team, on the game and also on my vacation – we need a vacation.”

“I have a contract with Leeds and this issue is resolved by my manager. When something is right, he sends [it to] me.”

With two years left on his contract at Elland Road, Barcelona are also keeping tabs on the 25-year-old.

Leeds United's Raphinha
Raphinha of Brazil takes a free kick during the international friendly match between South Korea and Brazil at Seoul World Cup Stadium on June 2, 2022 in Seoul, South Korea. (Photo by Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)
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Having come through the ranks at Portuguese club Vitoria de Guimaraes, Raphinha signed for Leeds United from Stade Rennais in October 2020 for a fee in the region of £17 million. Over the course of the past three years, the attacker has made 67 appearances for the Lilywhites, scoring 17 goals and bagging 12 assists across all competitions.

Even the past season, the Brazil international managed to find the back of the net eleven times while averaging 2.5 shots, 1.9 key passes, 1.8 dribbles, 0.9 crosses and 1.6 long balls per ninety minutes in the English top-flight. He was one of Leeds’ shining lights in an otherwise awful season where they avoided relegation by just three points.

Arteta Should Get Him On Board

Arsenal are among the favourites to qualify for the upcoming season of UEFA Champions League; however, Arteta would need to find the missing pieces of the puzzle to seriously challenge the Premier League top four next season. The departure of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has left a gaping hole in Arsenal’s front-line, and with Alexandre Lacazette also returning to Lyon, there’s no doubt that Arsenal to sign a quality forward (maybe two) who can slot into the starting line-up straight away – and Raphinha fits the bill perfectly. His recruitment will definitely strengthen the Gunners’ ranks at the top of the pitch, especially with record signing Nicolas Pepe expected to leave this summer.

(Stats from WhoScored)

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