Chelsea have been snubbed on many occasions this summer by various players and Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani has apologised after Raphinha opted to join Barcelona after a deal was “done”.
Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani has apologised to Todd Boehly and admits he felt “ashamed” to have to inform Chelsea of Raphinha’s £55million transfer U-turn.
The Brazilian international eventually joined Jules Kounde in snubbing Chelsea for Barcelona this summer as, despite their financial troubles, both saw Xavi’s project as the one for them.
On Raphinha though more specifically, Arsenal were the frontrunners in this transfer race for a while before Chelsea gazumped their London rivals with a £55million bid.
It was an offer that was accepted and created a lot of excitement at the time with the Blues fanbase. However, it soon became clear that Barca was always in his sights and the delay to agree on personal terms with the Blues proved telling in the end as the Catalan giants eventually sealed a deal.
Agent Deco’s relationship with Barca President Joan Laporta proved crucial in this case and without the former midfield maestro, the chances of his 25-year-old client playing in blue would have been a whole lot greater.
But that didn’t happen and with the dust settled on this transfer saga amid Chelsea’s pursuit of other attackers like Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Memphis Depay respectively, Radrizzani has broken his silence on Leeds’ perspective on the deal and surprisingly issued an apology over the saga.
“For me, it was done, and when I have a deal my word is my word. I felt ashamed to go back to [Chelsea owner] Todd Boehly and change my position,” he said exclusively to The Athletic. “We made the deal with Chelsea because the player wanted to go and he was open to listening to offers from Premier League clubs.
“Chelsea was in his favourable [option]. But unfortunately, let’s say Barcelona influences convinced the player to wait, to wait, to wait until they could find a solution.
This shows again the power and the leverage players and their agents have in the system, which for me is exaggerated, too much.
We do a lot of investment to build clubs. We invest hundreds of millions but all the power it seems to be with agents and representatives of these players.”