Chelsea to learn Raphinha fate ‘within 24 hours’ as Barcelona hesitate on £55m bid

Chelsea's 2022-23 Premier League fixtures

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Chelsea will learn their fate in the race for Leeds United star Raphinha in the next 24 hours, according to reports. Chelsea agreed a fee of around £55million with Leeds for Raphinha last month but Barcelona are his preferred destination.

Barca want to sign the Brazilian but are yet to make an official offer. And now Chelsea could benefit from the La Liga giants’ hesitation.

The Evening Standard claimed on Thursday afternoon that the Blues are the favourites to sign Raphinha. A decision on the player’s future is expected within 24 hours.

Raphinha has told Barca he is prepared to wait for them. But an offer has not materialised to put his dream move in doubt.

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Arsenal are still claimed to be keen on signing Raphinha after having a bid rejected earlier in the window. But Chelsea are at the front of the queue if Barca do not come up with the goods.

Chelsea are yet to make any signings under the ownership of Todd Boehly. The American promised Thomas Tuchel a large warchest this summer and they could be about to sign two top wingers.

Aside from the Raphinha pursuit, Chelsea are set to sign Manchester City star Raheem Sterling. The England international is set to cost up to £55m in total and has already agreed personal terms ahead of becoming the club’s highest-paid player ever.

The signing of Sterling is set to meet the approval of former Chelsea left-back Scot Minto. He claimed last week that Sterling would be a better signing for his old club than Raphinha.

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Minto told talkSPORT: “I would definitely go for Raheem Sterling. I think he would be a superb readymade signing.

“I’d go for him over Raphinha. I’m not quite sure where they are in levels there but it looks like Raphinha is the one Chelsea are chasing right now, but I’d go for Sterling.

“Because you know what you’re getting, he does what it says on the tin. I think he’s just a little bit below world class.

“World class for me, if you had a world XI, would he get in there? I think he’s just probably a little bit below that but he shows world class touches, games, moments.

“And in terms of the Premier League, you can’t prove anymore than he’s already done. So I would go all out for him even if you overpay.”

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