There has been a new twist to West Ham’s hopes of signing Leeds United star Raphinha this summer after a reporter’s claim.

West Ham were reportedly seriously keen to sign Leeds United’s Brazilian ace Raphinha during the January transfer window.

The likes of Sky Sports claimed that the Hammers wanted to sign the brilliant Leeds ace.

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And a number of sources reported West Ham saw a bid of £50m turned down by Leeds during the last knockings of the window (90 Min).

Marcelo Bielsa brought the 25-year-old to Leeds in the summer of 2020 for around £17 million and he has established himself as one of the best players outside the top six.

Raphinha was at his imperious best for Leeds at the weekend as they secured a vital 2-1 win over Norwich while West Ham won by the same scoreline against Aston Villa.

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One wonders what West Ham might be capable of this season had they managed to lure Raphinha away from Leeds with David Moyes’s shallow squad starting to get seriously overstretched.

West Ham also moved for Raphinha’s Leeds teammate Kalvin Phillips in January. And reports have abound since the window closed that Moyes will try again for both players in the summer.

But there has been a new twist to any West Ham hopes of signing Leeds star Raphinha this summer after a respected transfer reporter’s claim.

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New twist to West Ham hopes of signing Leeds star Raphinha this summer after reporter’s claim

West Ham’s Raphinha hopes now look bleak bleak after Italian reporter Fabrizio Romano claimed Barcelona – as well as Liverpool – are interested in the Elland Road star.

“Barcelona are interested in Raphinha alongside Premier League clubs, including Liverpool (Chelsea wanted him, now in stand-by).

“Barca already discussed about Raphinha with Deco. No talks yet with Leeds – as price depends on their PL future and potential buy out clauses.”

West Ham’s interest in Raphinha always felt like a big of a long shot.

The Hammers are a big club and definitely a step up from Leeds in many ways, particularly given their rise to establishing themselves as a genuine European outfit.

West Ham United v Leeds United - Premier League
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But now the likes of Barca and Liverpool are interested, it seems an impossibility.

Moyes saw how difficult it is to sign top class talent in January as Luis Diaz was stolen from under his nose.

When Liverpool got wind West Ham were closing on a deal for Diaz they swooped to stop Moyes getting hold of what looks a supreme talent.

It seems West Ham will now have to explore other options instead.

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