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Leeds United transfer news: Pundit backs Whites player to snub major move as Euro giants prioritise midfielder

Raphinha’s impact for Leeds United this season has been tremendous.

Tuesday, 2nd March 2021, 2:30 pm

The Brazilian has been a standout performer for Marcelo Bielsa’s men since his arrival from Rennes over the summer, and has registered five goals and five assists in 21 Premier League outings so far.

He has also made the most key passes and successful dribbles per 90 minutes of any player in the Whites’ squad this season, and has recorded the highest average match rating at Elland Road this term too, as per Whoscored.

It’s quite understandable, therefore, that he is in demand.

Various reports in recent weeks have linked the 24-year-old with interest from the likes of Liverpool, Manchester United, and even Barcelona.

But former Scotland manager Alex McLeish has argued that any potential summer exit could be nipped in the bud if Leeds are willing to front up the money to give Raphinha a pay rise.

He told Football Insider: “When a player like Raphinha is excelling then the player thinks the club should reward him with a pay rise.

“Then, when the player gets that kind of reward from his bosses, he has a devotion to play to keep playing for that team.

“He says: ‘Have I done well for them? Yes, I have, but I’ve not got a big ego that I’m going to cause mayhem and want to leave for Barcelona or wherever.’

“They can be up for grabs for some of the big teams, let’s not get away from that, but there’s got to be a sense of loyalty as well.”

McLeish is not the only pundit to have mooted the prospect of a pay rise for the Brazilian in recent days, with Jermaine Beckford also urging his former club to get a deal done.

Elsewhere, Inter Milan are understood to have made Rodrigo De Paul a priority target ahead of this summer’s transfer window.

According to Sempre Inter, Antonio Conte has identified the Argentine as a player who he is eager to snap up in the coming months.

De Paul was heavily linked with a move to Elland Road last summer, but a deal failed to materialise.

Since then, he has gone from strength to strength for current club Udinese, and is currently the 11th highest-rated player in Serie A, as per Whoscored...

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