Leeds United’s Raphinha has broken the silence on his transfer situation ahead of the summer window, with Chelsea long linked for a move and Arsenal reportedly eyeing the Brazilian as a potential Nicolas Pepe replacement.
According to journalist Gianluigi Longari, Arsenal and Manchester United are interested in a move, while Barcelona and Chelsea have both previously been linked.
The Gunners will need to strengthen in the wide areas ahead of next season due to the lack of depth in the forward positions.
Raphinha would be a quality signing for the Gunners if Pepe is to depart from the club.
Speaking to the press ahead of Brazil’s friendly with Japan on Monday, Raphinha addressed his future at Leeds, but made clear his intention was to do anything to play for Brazil in Qatar.
“If I say that it doesn’t matter, I would be lying,” Raphinha said, as reported by Globo.
“Questions then followed about his future at Leeds, to which he replied:”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 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.”
It would have seemed bizarre for Arsenal to be linked with the Brazilian because the Gunners already have two left-footed wingers who are strongest on the right-hand side in Bukayo Saka and Pepe.
The Ivorian has seriously struggled for game time at the Emirates this season.
Pepe’s future is uncertain at the club as the winger wants to leave Arsenal this summer and has instructed his agent to find him a new club, football.
The winger has two years left on his deal and found the game time given to him by Arteta extremely limited during the previous campaign which has likely led to his desire for a way out of the club.
Since joining Leeds United 2020, Raphinha has been the White’s main threat, which is a major reason why he received recognition from the Brazilian national team and why he has also attracted interest from Europe’s elite clubs.