By Joe Ellis

29th Jun, 2022 | 10:40am

Chelsea enter 'key hours' in pursuit of Leeds United ace Raphinha - Fabrizio Romano

There are key hours ahead in the deal which would see Raphinha leave Leeds United to join divisional rivals Chelsea, according to Fabrizio Romano.

The Blues, under their new ownership, are starting to throw money around here, there and everywhere and one of the players they have quickly agreed terms for is our star winger.

Romano, an Italian journalist for Sky Sports among others, believes that the fee is somewhere between £60-65million but they now have to come to an agreement with the Brazilian and his agent Deco, a former Chelsea player himself.

“Key hours ahead for Chelsea as they will try to reach full agreement with Brazilian winger and his agent Deco on personal terms, really important step,” Romano said via his personal Twitter account.

“Club agreement with Leeds for £60/65m total fee – Arsenal tried until yesterday… and now waiting.”

La Liga giants Barcelona have long been in the race to sign the 25-year-old but their financial situation means they have not been able to match any valuation from the Whites this summer.

End is nye

With so much talk surrounding his future, a lot of us have already resigned to the fact that he won’t be lining up for Leeds United next season which, while a great shame, is a sign of our transfer policy working tremendously.

Victor Orta didn’t sign Raphinha for him to play at Elland Road until the end of his career but to rather help us establish ourselves in the Premier League and then sell him for a big profit.

That’s exactly what is seemingly about to happen so we can’t really have any complaints about this deal, even if it will make us a slightly less potent team in attack.

This huge sum of money is going to go a long way in allowing us to completely rebuild the team that only just survived relegation last season in Jesse Marsch’s image and we could end up getting two or three Raphinha-like players for the price of one.

It might hurt us in the immediate future but this sale will be a great thing for the club if we invest the money we receive in the correct areas of the squad and the club.

In other Leeds United news, Newcastle will not give up on signing this Whites player but there is one unexpected problem that is holding the Magpies back.