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Ousmane Dembele transfer assessed as Chelsea consider Raphinha amid Barcelona contract admission



Thomas Tuchel is desparate for Ousmane Dembele but Barcelona could have other plans. The Blues must consider their contingency plan

Leeds United forward Raphinha continues to be linked with a move to Chelsea but how does he compare to Ousmane Dembele?
Leeds United forward Raphinha continues to be linked with a move to Chelsea but how does he compare to Ousmane Dembele?
As far as transfer news goes, Chelsea’s summer window should be quite a boring topic, right? There are several rumours surrounding the several defenders that the Blues have been linked with, and not enough on the potential forwards that Thomas Tuchel should be considering. With Romelu Lukaku and Timo Werner unhappy with last season’s productivity, they could be headed out the door this summer. Lukaku is already eyeing up a loan move to Inter Milan, which has progressed drastically since the start of the month.

Whilst it may take weeks before we see Chelsea finalise any moves, one of their prospects could end up in Spain. Barcelona had previously made a move on Leeds United forward Raphinha, who Chelsea had been linked with since January. We cannot seem to catch a break without the Spaniards lurking right behind us. The Catalans are still not giving up on potentially pinning Dembele down to another contract, too.

I guess Thomas Tuchel’s interest in Ousmane Dembele has a part to play in Barcelona’s hunt for the Leeds forward. However, if we had to choose between the two forwards, it’ll be a difficult ask.

Chelsea were rumoured to have had an initial bid for Raphinha rejected back in January this year. The winter transfer window was awfully quiet for the Blues, despite the multiple injuries in key areas and the clear need to sign a left-back. Chelsea remained quiet for the duration of the window, however, their secret has come to light. Leeds reportedly rejected a £40million bid from Chelsea for their star forward, even though this is around the price that they had valued him. According to Sport, Barcelona also had their initial offer of £29million declined by Leeds before raising their offer to £42 million.

The Blues and Thomas Tuchel will need to assess their priorities here. Ousmane Dembele will be out of contract at the end of the month and with Barcelona still trying to entice him into a new contract, would the Blues need to look at a contingency plan? Just last month, Barcelona president, Joan Laporta, insisted that he believes Dembele would stay at the club despite being tempted by other teams.

There are positives and negatives to either player. It’ll be worth assessing as the Blues await an answer from Dembele.

Ousmane Dembele

As France’s famous World Cup triumph song translates: ‘I no longer know if I am a lefty or a righty, I shoot with both feet: Ousmane Dembele!’ Dembele is a phenomenal talent with the rare gift of being a two-footed genius. It’s no wonder that Thomas Tuchel seems to be head over heels for the 25-year-old. There’s something about him that makes the Chelsea boss want to reunite with his former Borussia Dortmund attacker. He has already told him his plans ahead of the new season.

Comfortable on either wing and with either foot, you cannot question his ability. What you can question, though, is his fitness. I feel for Chelsea’s medical team this season. The number of injuries picked up by the Chelsea players has kept them busy all season long. Adding another injury-prone forward to the mix is just asking for disaster.

Since transferring in 2016, Dembele has missed 102 matches due to injury. Thinking about it in comparison to Christian Pulisic, who has missed 61 in the same amount of time, that is rather a lot. However, Barcelona are still keen on Dembele signing a new contract to keep him at the Nou Camp. The ball is in the Frenchman’s court.

Unsure as to whether a change in medical team could do the trick for the Frenchman, why should Chelsea take the risk when they could easily put forward an offer suitable enough to land Raphinha?


As Barcelona look to take a couple of Chelsea’s prize assets in Cesar Azpilicueta and Andreas Christensen, why not disrupt their business also? It’s time to put the gloves on and enter the ring with the Catalans. Raphinha has the attention of top Premier League clubs, including Arsenal. There’s a reason why he has caught the eye of so many. He’s a phenomenal trickster of a player. Given the right team around him, it’s not an overstatement to say that he could become one of the best in Europe.

The Brazilian is the stand-out in the Leeds set-up and was one of the key reasons they were promoted to the Premier League in 2020. The 25-year-old is yet to reach his peak. I can only imagine what a manager like Thomas Tuchel will be capable of bringing out of him. I guess only time will tell if we get to find out.

Having either Dembele or Raphinha is not a bad way to go. I would actually be happy with either signing, funnily enough. Barcelona could lose out to Chelsea one way or the other. In an ideal world, the Blues would sign both forwards this summer and close this chapter completely

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