Raphinha, Arsenal’s top transfer target has rejected the club and prefers to join Chelsea instead.
For this reason, the Gunners’ first open bid for the Brazilian has been turned down by Leeds United.
The Athletic reports that Arsenal faces strong competition to sign Raphinha as Barcelona, Chelsea and Tottenham are also in the race for the 25-year-old.
According to The Athletic, Mikel Arteta’s Gunners tabled a formal offer but the bid is set to be ‘rejected out of hand’ by Leeds as it falls well short of their valuation for the player.
It added that should the player decide to remain in the Premier League for next season, Chelsea would be his destination.
Raphinha had chosen Barcelona as his first choice of clubs to join among many suitors, but the Spanish side is restricted by their finances and is looking to offload players first.
Raphinha, who joined Leeds in a £17 million deal from Rennes in 2020, still has two years on his current contract.
It’s understood that Leeds is holding out for a £50m fee for the Brazil international.