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Raphinha’s agent Deco on Liverpool interest, Leeds United intentions and Brazilian winger’s ambitions

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YEP reported in June that Victor Orta had received no contact from the Reds regarding Raphinha and Deco said Leeds wanted to keep the Brazilian for another season anyway.

But the former Portugal international has predicted that his client will leave Elland Road to pursue his career and that Leeds will want to make a “big” sale.

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“He is young, he has a lot of challenges to face, there are certainly several clubs who like him, and Liverpool like him, there have been polls but nothing official. Leeds wanted to keep him for a while. other season.

“Raphinha is happy at Leeds and for sure the time will come to take the biggest leap in his career, to take a step forward. He has a three-year contract, but that’s not the contract that defines it. length of stay or preventing transfers. Leeds know they’ll want to make a big sale, and Raphinha will eventually grow in her career. “

Given all the rumors from Leeds majority owner Andrea Radrizzani about the Leicester City model, which has been supported by the development and subsequent sale of talent for huge profits, the idea of ​​losing a star player at some point in the future hasn’t come as a huge shock to White fans. A move to Leeds has helped the player’s profile grow remarkably, giving him a platform to show off his skills in what his head coach Marcelo Bielsa today called the ‘best league in the world’. It has also led to international recognition – Raphinha is set to make his international debut for Brazil in the early hours of tomorrow morning as his career takes another step forward.

Before playing for Leeds, his stint with Portuguese teams Vitória Guimarães and Sporting, for whom he played in the Europa League, and Rennes, which he helped qualify for the Champions League, did not cede recognition. at the Seleção.

GROWING PROFILE – The move to Leeds United has led to international recognition with Brazil for winger Raphinha. Photo: Bruce Rollinson

It was only after a Premier League season under Marcelo Bielsa at Elland Road, in which he contributed six goals and nine assists, that the 24-year-old was called up by the coach- head of Brazil Tite.

He came off the bench twice last week to win his first two international caps, impressive in both matches against Venezuela and Colombia, and is in contention for a third against Uruguay on Friday morning.

“I told Raphinha that he might have an opportunity in the Brazilian team, because he has characteristics different from other extremes, I always thought. I see the team, I know Raphinha and I see football , I told him that I would wait a bit, seeing that he would have a chance, ”Deco said.

“But we were in a year of a pandemic, a lot of people couldn’t travel to see the players which made it difficult. He got a lot of attention in the Premier League, and Leeds are not one of the most famous clubs. This has attracted attention., it deserves to have been called.

When the winger left Sporting for Rennes and when he left the Ligue 1 club for Leeds, Deco made it clear that it was not the player’s decision but the seller’s.

In September 2019, the agent said: “Things have always been very clear, it was a decision solely and exclusively for Sporting. It was Sporting’s decision, we have to prepare for it.”

Earlier this year he addressed the departure from Rennes saying: “We don’t know why Rennes decided to sell Raphinha, that’s a question for them, not for Raphinha.

“I don’t know if it was a financial decision or a technical decision.”

In his latest interview, Deco insists that the player himself built his CV through his own hard work, developing himself as a performer enough to shine and attract opportunities.

“Of course you try to analyze and advise as best you can, but then it’s the player, what he does on a daily basis, he is dedicated, the agent is the one who advises, but you have to work and look for the best solutions, ”he said.

“After Vitória Raphinha was sold to Sporting. Playing in Portugal was important for his growth, he went from an average club to a big one. Then Sporting had to sell Raphinha, the Rennes project was very good. At the time, Raphinha was the club’s biggest recruit, he stood out in the French league, and Rennes also needed to sell him, everything happened quickly in his career.

“The Leeds option was good, a strong club, with a good coach. Leeds really believed in Raphinha and they hired him. During this whole period we are trying to advise on the options we have, but in the end the player builds his career as opportunities present themselves. “

As for what might happen next for the man Leeds United fans have adopted as favorites, a man under contract until 2024, Deco says now is not the time to discuss it. But discuss it, just enough to firmly express the player’s ambition and hint at what can only be interpreted as Champions League aspirations.

Whatever Raphinha’s future may be, Deco expects it to come naturally to his player.

“Raphinha will play at the top level for many years to come, I don’t know if Premier forever, but it will definitely be in the options,” he said.

“Raphinha has a market and Leeds have high expectations, it was never a rush project. He has ambition to play at a higher level despite Leeds being in the Premier League. But now is not the time. – things will happen naturally. “

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