Transfer Talk: Blues and Magpies chase Barca speedster Raphinha
Chelsea and Newcastle are in the mix to sign Barcelona winger Raphinha at the end of the season.
The Brazilian international, 26, joined the Catalan giants from Leeds in a £55million deal last summer.
Raphinha has had an increasingly important role to play at the Camp Nou, netting the decisive goals in Barca’s recent 1-0 victories over Valencia and Athletic Bilbao.
But the Blaugrana urgently need to balance their books and may have to offload some key players in the coming months.
The Daily Mail say Chelsea see the Porto Alegre native as a solution to their attacking woes, with the Blues netting a meagre 27 goals in 26 Premier League outings this term.
Newcastle are also in the market to add some firepower to Eddie Howe’s forward line as they seek to build on a promising season at St James’ Park.
Italian media report Arsenal may also throw their hat into the ring after failing to land Raphinha in past transfer windows.
Barca’s No22 will be back in action in Sunday’s El Clasico, where Xavi’s men will seek to establish a 12-point gap over fierce LaLiga rivals Real Madrid.
In other news
Newcastle are preparing a bid for Southampton skipper James Ward-Prowse should the Saints suffer relegation to the Championship, according to reports in Italy.
Transfer guru Ekrem Konur understands Atletico Madrid will offer Liverpool forward Roberto Firmino a two-year contract when he becomes a free agent at the end of the season.
The Daily Mail believe Saudi outfit Al-Ittihad are ready to give Wilfried Zaha a £9m annual salary to tempt the Crystal Palace winger to leave South London.