Chelsea have agreed a £55million fee with Leeds United for Raphinha, stunning Arsenal in the race to sign the Brazilian winger.
The Gunners had been hopeful of adding the 26-year-old star to their attack ahead of the 2022-23 season, having wrapped up a deal to bring his countryman Gabriel Jesus to the Emirates last week.
Chelsea however have moved quickly to beat their London rivals to a key signing, according to reports.
The Blues have reached an agreement with Leeds over the fee and are now expected to agree personal terms.
Raphinha’s preference was thought to be a move to Stamford Bridge once it became apparent Barcelona would struggle to fund a move to the Camp Nou.
Arsenal made a bid for the former Rennes star last week but their offer was rejected out of hand by Leeds, falling well short of their valuation.
Raphinha, who is represented by former Blues midfielder Deco, is now expected to join Raheem Sterling in Thomas Tuchel’s new-look attack.
Chelsea are already in talks to sign the England international from Manchester City in a deal that is likely to cost them around £50m.
The Londoners are also in talks to sign Nathan Ake from City – with their former defender said to be open to a return to west London.
Chelsea are in the market to sign at least two defenders this summer having lost both Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen to Barcelona and Real Madrid respectively.
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