Arsenal could be given the opportunity to seal the signing of Raphinha in the summer due to Barcelona’s surprise interest in defender Takehiro Tomiyasu.
Raphinha, 26, only moved to Barcelona from Leeds United last summer, and after a slow start to life in Spain, he has become a vital cog in their attack. The Brazilian has featured 37 times for Xavi Hernandez’s side, scoring nine goals and supplying as many assists.
Despite being a mainstay for Xavi’s side, Barcelona potentially could be forced to make some difficult decisions in the summer due to their financial constraints. The Catalan giants reportedly may be ready to let Raphinha join Arsenal for a reduced fee if they manage to land Takehiro Tomiyasu.
Tomiyasu, 24, joined Arsenal from Bologna in the summer of 2021 and enjoyed a decent debut season in England. He played 21 times in the Premier League, and while he has reached that mark already this season, the Japanese international has been an understudy to Ben White at right-back.
Barcelona have held a long-standing interest in Tomiyasu, who could fulfil his dream of playing at Camp Nou as he trained at the Barca Academy in Fukuoka, Japan.
Should Arsenal consider Raphinha swap deal involving Tomiyasu?
Raphinha has long-since been linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium and Arsenal were seen to be in the quest for his signature when he left Leeds United in 2021. Having impressed at the World Cup last year, as well as playing an important role in helping Barcelona rise to the top of La Liga, the winger has re-emerged on the radar of the Gunners as Mikel Arteta sets his sights on summer targets.
Arsenal lead the Premier League, five points clear of second-placed Manchester City, with the north London outfit almost certain to return to the Champions League next season. The club are expected to be busy during the upcoming window, with Mikel Arteta making the signing of a forward one of his top priorities.
The Gunners have been heavily reliant on Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli this season. To improve the attacking unit, as well as manage the workload of Saka and Martinelli, they signed Leandro Trossard from Brighton in January. In a short space of time, Trossard has proved to be a brilliant acquisition for Arteta’s side.
Arsenal potentially competing in the Champions League next term means Arteta will need a bigger squad than he has at his disposal. A creative winger is certainly a no-brainer for the Gunners and Raphinha could be a smart addition to the team’s attack. Raphinha was undoubtedly Leeds’ best player in the past two seasons and could make an instant impact for Arteta’s side.
As for Tomiyasu, the defender has dropped behind White in the right-back pecking order. At 24, the Japanese is still good enough to be a long-term part of Arteta’s project, but if Barcelona proposes a swap deal between Tomiyasu and Raphinha, Arsenal must definitely take it.
I am Rohan Sengupta from one of the busiest cities in India, Mumbai. A Journalism graduate with a keen interest in sports, football is something I simply cannot live without and writing, discussing and analyzing the game is what I do 24*7.
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