By Daniel Feliciano

27th Dec, 2021 | 2:30pm

Chelsea want to sign Raphinha from Leeds - journo

Chelsea have joined the race to sign Leeds winger Raphinha in 2022, according to journalist Gianluigi Longari.

Raphinha has been the stand-out performer in a poor Leeds team this season as they have picked up just three wins from 17 games so far, leaving them battling relegation.

The Brazilian has scored eight goals and registered one assist in 16 appearances so far in the Premier League and has been linked with a move to Bayern Munich in January.

He’s also previously been linked with a move to Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool side, but it now seems as though Chelsea are interested too.

According to Longari, Thomas Tuchel’s side are interested in signing the 25-year-old and are looking towards the summer to make a deal happen rather than in January.

Inevitable

It seems inevitable now that Raphinha will leave Leeds before the start of next season, but it’s imperative that they keep hold of him for the rest of this season at least.

He is the shining light in a shocking side right now and even the most die-hard Leeds United fan would find it hard to begrudge him a move away from the club to a top European giant.

He has a ‘phenomenal‘ ability to perform at the highest level and with the World Cup coming up in Qatar in 2022, he knows he needs to continue to play at a high level to keep his place in their squad for the tournament.

If Marcelo Bielsa can keep hold of him beyond the winter window, then not only will they likely get the chance to increase his price tag but they would also have a far better chance of survival and that is the most important thing to the club right now.

In other Leeds news, FIFA rule change gives Marcelo Bielsa new headache ahead of Burnley fixture.