Although it may not take place until next summer, there’s already a transfer battle royale brewing between Newcastle United and Chelsea.
The Magpies have endured an incredible run of injuries which has significantly hampered what Eddie Howe was hoping to achieve this season.
With one eye on Financial Fair Play, the Saudi Public Investment Fund are going to have to adopt some financial gymnastics in order to bring in one or two players in January, with more of a focus likely to be on the summer market.
That’s likely to bring them into direct competition with Todd Boehly at Chelsea, with both teams reportedly after the same target.
According to Sport, Barcelona’s Raphinha is a player of interest, and given his patchy form there’s every reason to believe that the Catalans would consider a sale if their asking price was to be met.
The Blaugranes are still believed to be mired in debt, so any player that can earn them a pretty penny has to be considered as a saleable asset.
Currently earning £208,000 per week (Capology), it’s difficult to know which outfit the Brazilian would be likely to pick should he eventually have to accept his Barcelona career is over.
Newcastle are clearly a team on the up and they love a tricky wide man – just ask David Ginola or Laurent Robert.
Chelsea offer the bright lights of the capital as an inducement that many players have fallen prey to in the past.