Liverpool are reportedly set to rival AS Roma in the pursuit of Barcelona superstar Rafinha, who has been tipped to leave Nou Camp in the summer.
According to a report from Liverpool Echo, Liverpool are interested in Barcelona superstar Rafinha and are set to rival AS Roma in the pursuit of the Brazilian playmaker, who has been heavily linked with a summer exit from Nou Camp.
Rafinha is another Brazilian that arrived at Nou Camp early on in his footballing career and has gradually developed into a quality midfielder. This season has seen the 24-year-old play a more integral role in the first-team setup at the club, with 28 appearances in all competitions and a return of 7 goals and 5 assists to show for his efforts.
Rafinha has developed quite well but has failed to reach the heights that his brother, Thiago Alcantara has managed to achieve after securing a move to Bayern Munich. Rafinha has slowly started gaining importance at Nou Camp.
However, the departure of Luis Enrique could not have come at a worse time. The arrival of a new manager is likely to bring about another overhaul, small or big, of the squad and the Brazilian is again in danger of falling down the pecking order, as was evidenced in the beginning upon the arrival of Andre Gomes, Denis Suarez and Paco Alcacer.
Liverpool will do battle with Roma for Barcelona midfielder Rafinha. [Liverpool Echo] pic.twitter.com/5SkuuGT2Tz
— Rousing The Kop (@RousingTheKop) May 29, 2017
Rafinha may instead look to follow in his brother’s footsteps and move abroad in order to continue his development, with Liverpool and Roma both set to battle each other to land the 24-year-old.
Liverpool need to add depth to their squad, given their return to the Champions League. Add to that the speculation surrounding the future of Coutinho at Anfield and the Reds may be in need of a player of a similar skill.
Also, there have been reports of Barcelona willing to use Rafinha as a makeweight to get the Coutinho deal done – a proposition Liverpool could accept. However, AS Roma are set to provide stiff competition to the Reds. The club finished second in Serie A and also said farewell to a true club legend in Francesco Totti.
Roma are set to miss Totti’s presence in the squad and while no one can match the experience the legend provides, Rafinha’s arrival can mitigate the effect of the legend’s retirement on the squad, skill-wise. The club can also provide the same prospect of Champions League football as Liverpool and Barcelona can.
The player will likely cost the clubs around £25 million for his services – a fee that is unlikely to faze either suitor. It will be interesting to see where Rafinha lands. However, his Barcelona future does look bleak at the present moment.