Leeds owner Andrea Radrizzani ‘ashamed’ in telling Todd Boehly Chelsea’s move for Raphinha had broken down

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 (Getty Images)
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Leeds United chairman Andrea Radrizzani admits he felt “ashamed” in telling Chelsea co-owner Todd Boehly that Raphinha would be joining Barcelona.

The Brazilian international had been the subject of an accepted £55m offer from Thomas Tuchel’s side but eventually moved to the Camp Nou, the first of a number of battles between Chelsea and Barca this summer.

Fellow target Jules Kounde followed Raphinha to the Catalan giants, while Barca retained an interest in Cesar Azpilicueta (prior to his signing of a new contract) and Marcos Alonso. Andreas Christensen also moved to the La Liga club after running down his contract in SW6.

Speaking to The Athletic, Radrizzani revealed a deal with Chelsea was done but admitted he was forced into changing his position, with “Barcelona influences” convincing the player to wait while the club raised funds.

Barca have spent big this summer amidst a backdrop of financial uncertainty, bringing Raphinha, Christensen, Kounde, Franck Kessie and Robert Lewandowski to the Camp Nou.

“For me, it was done, and when I have a deal my word is my word. I felt ashamed to go back to Todd Boehly and change my position,” said Radrizzani.

“We made the deal with Chelsea because the player wanted to go and he was open to listening to offers from Premier League clubs,

“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.”

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