Lee Sharpe names only clubs that could sign Leeds United talisman Raphinha this summer
Former Leeds United midfielder Lee Sharpe has argued that nobody other than one of the Premier League’s top four clubs could lure Raphinha away from Elland Road this summer.
The Brazilian winger has enjoyed a stellar debut campaign in England, scoring six goals and assisting seven more in the top flight since arriving from Rennes at the beginning of the season.
The 24-year-old’s efforts haven’t gone unnoticed either, with the likes of Manchester United and Liverpool credited with holding an interest in the wide man.
But Sharpe has argued that it would take a special offer from an elite club to prise Raphinha or any of his standout teammates, away from Leeds in the coming months.
Speaking to Genting Bet, he said: “It depends on who’s interested in them as to whether Leeds can keep hold of their best talent.
"Raphinha has already been linked with Manchester United, Liverpool, Man City. And I think if a top six club come in, it would be very, very difficult to keep them, but anybody other than the top six - or even top four at the moment comes in, I don’t think there’s a bigger club they can be at.
"If Leeds can get fans back, I don’t think there’s a better atmosphere they can go and play in.
“And with the way the team is growing and being shaped up - Leeds are on the ascendancy, so it would be a club to stay at for the next couple of years to see where they can take it. Whereas, when you go to a new club you’re always running the risk of whether you fit in, whether the team performs well.
"So, I think a lot of the players will stay because I think they do like the management, and they can see where Leeds are going, and what they’re building.
“And like I say, the only way they would risk losing them is if you get a Man City, Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea, if they start coming in then they might lose a couple.”
Raphinha himself has made it very clear in recent weeks that he is content with his current situation at Elland Road, reserving special praise for manager and “father figure” Marcelo Bielsa.