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Tottenham are ready to rival Arsenal in the race for Raphinha – but both clubs could miss out on the Leeds star.
Arsenal have already had an opening bid for the Brazilian forward rejected and are now expected to return with an improved offer. Spurs have made it known to Leeds that they too are interested in the player and intend to make an offer of their own.
The complication for both clubs is the player had his heart set on a move to Barcelona, who agreed personal terms with him weeks ago. But Barca are struggling to get anywhere near his £60million asking price because of Financial Fair Play pressure in Spain.
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That has allowed both Premier League clubs to pile in – with Chelsea also sounding out the possibility of a move. However, the 25-year-old is understood to be willing to wait for Barcelona, who remain in pole position to land him.
Raphinha has scored 17 goals in 65 Premier League games for Leeds, who do not want to sell but accept they may have little choice if their financial demands are met.
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The player has two years left on his contract but there is an acceptance on both sides that he will not be signing a new one and wants to move on.
Meanwhile, Arsenal announced the signing of Fabio Vieira yesterday in what was a £32.4m deal from Porto. "I am very excited that we have identified and signed such a special talent," said Gunners boss Mikel Arteta. "Fabio is a very creative player that will bring high quality and versatility to our attacking play."
Tottenham brought in Brighton midfielder Yves Bissouma on a four-year deal, subject to being granted a work permit. Spurs will pay an initial £25m, which will potentially rise to £35m.
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