Barcelona have reportedly offered Rafinha and Jean-Clair Todibo on loan to FC Porto to secure a loan deal for promising defender Diogo Leite.
As reported by Spanish publication AS, Barcelona are in negotiations with FC Porto over a potential three-player loan swap deal which would see Diogo Leite arrive at Camp Nou with Rafinha Alcantara and Jean-Clair Todibo moving the other away.
The 21-year-old Leite is a product of the Porto youth academy, having been on the club’s books since 2008. He made his senior debut for the Portuguese giants back in August 2018 and has since gone on to make 24 first-team appearances, scoring two goals and setting up one more.
— Diogo Leite (@Diogoleite53) July 28, 2018
A talented young defender, Leite has represented the Portugal national team across all age groups but is yet to earn a senior call-up. Nevertheless, his potential has alerted Barcelona, who are now looking to secure his services on loan for the 2020/21 campaign.
The Catalans are in desperate need of a left-footed centre-back, with Samuel Umtiti’s never-ending tryst with injuries continuing, which has left them with Clement Lenglet as the only option to partner with Gerard Pique at the heart of the defence. This search has now led them to Porto, with Leite emerging as a viable target.
And in order to secure the young Portuguese defender’s services on loan, the Blaugrana are prepared to offer two players of their own, on temporary deals to Porto. The two players in question are midfielder Rafinha Alcantara and defender Jean-Clair Todibo.
Both Rafinha and Todibo are back at Barcelona after their respective loan spells away at Celta Vigo and FC Schalke. However, neither are seemingly a part of new manager Ronald Koeman’s plans moving forward. Hence, the Catalans are prepared to use them as makeweights in their attempt to sign Leite.
However, there are complications to the deal as Rafinha has several other offers, while Todibo, too, is being courted by a number of clubs including Premier League outfit Fulham as well as German heavyweights Borussia Dortmund. Barcelona, though, are insisting that the duo join FC Porto, which would enable them to secure Leite’s signing.
The report does state that a deal is expected to be completed in the coming hours. Add to it, Porto are working towards securing a loan deal for Chelsea’s Malang Sarr – another left-footed centre-back, which would allow them to let go of Leite.
It has been a difficult summer for Barcelona what with all the off-field issues and a lack of transfer budget. But it is expected to be a busy deadline day at Camp Nou, with Memphis Depay set to complete a long-awaited transfer to the La Liga giants. It remains to be seen if they are also able to add Leite to their roster before the window closes.