Thanks to their well-documented financial woes, Barcelona will have little choice but to make major sales this summer. Having finances accessible to their new manager—who they yet have to announce—is supposedly their goal

Raphinha is among a number of players who have recently come to light as potential trade targets. In fact, a Saudi team may make Barcelona a massive transfer bid for winger Raphinha in the summer.

As part of the 2024 roster shakeup, rumors have circulated that the Brazilian international may leave Catalonia. The winger’s high market worth makes him an attractive selling point. Especially after he lost his starting spot to Lamine Yamal in recent months.

Speculation has said that the Catalan giants might pocket as much as $108 million from his transfer to Saudi Arabia.

Raphinha was on international duty this week
Raphinha was on international duty this week

Raphinha was on international duty this week

Big offer incoming

Following a massive expenditure in 2023, the Saudi Pro League is likely to make additional high-profile acquisitions again.

The time it takes to convince Barcelona to sell and for a Saudi club to submit an offer is still rather long. Nevertheless, a substantial offer may entice them to consider selling.

The Blaugrana would certainly consider such an offer, especially given the club’s ongoing financial struggles, Sport says. Many believe that a major sale is necessary due to rumors surrounding the potential departures of Raphinha, Jules Kounde, and Ronald Araujo from the club this summer.

There have been rumors that Barcelona turned down substantial bids for Araujo and Lamine Yamal, but the Brazilian might be a whole other scenario. The Catalan giants had spent $69 million to get the Brazil international from Leeds. Thus, any bigger offer would be an enormous increase to that amount.

On the other hand, Saturday saw president Joan Laporta express optimism regarding player retention and emphasize the club’s desire not to give up on any key players.

“If all goes to plan with our goals, we won’t be forced to sell any player. Of course, if someone wants to leave, we won’t stop them; but I’m not worried at all with that, we want to keep same squad”, he said.

Deco to protect player?

However, things may turn out differently in practice. If the club accepts the offer that Al-Hilal are ready to make, Raphinha could be Laporta’s “lever” this summer, the report adds.

Al-Hilal is offering the player a total of $87 million, with the remaining amount coming from bonuses. Mundo Deportivo notes that Raphinha wants nothing to do with leaving the club. He also wants his former agent, Deco to protect him.

Furthermore, Fabrizio Romano has clarified that Raphinha’s status at Barcelona is very open, according to The Daily Briefing.

“I’m not aware of any official or formal bid from Al Hilal for Raphinha at this stage, despite reports by some outlets. I’m still told that Raphinha could be one to watch in the summer in the even of good proposal, but I’m not in the position to confirm about Saudi as most likely destination as I’m told is nothing close or concrete so far, so I believe Europe is still an option.”

Photo credit: IMAGO / NurPhoto IMAGO / CordonPress