Tuesday, February 25th, 2014
It is fair to say that 2013/2014 has been the breakout season for Rafinha Alcantara.
Brother of Thiago Alcantara (now at Bayern Munich) and son of World Cup winner Mazinho, Rafinha has been excellent on loan from Barcelona at Celta Vigo this season.
Rafinha came to prominence with an excellent goal on Saturday for Celta Vigo versus Getafe but has been one of the best midfielders in La Liga all season.
The 21-year-old has been a key reason behind Celta Vigo’s fine recent form which has lifted them away from the relegation zone.
El Mundo Deportivo report that four huge English clubs are now watching Rafinha closely: Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool.
In Barcelona they celebrated Rafinha signing a new contract last summer, especially with Thiago leaving for Bayern Munich to play under Pep Guardiola.
But, this new deal includes a release clause of 30 million euros which El Mundo Deportivo suggest Manchester City and Manchester United would have no problem paying.
The Catalan paper add that Rafinha could well become a key transfer target for Manchester United in the summer and could dove tail well with fellow Spaniard Juan Mata.
Much like Thiago last summer, Rafinha looks set to return to Barcelona eager for first team football but there is no guarantee with the wealth of midfield talent at the Nou Camp.
They add that Rafinha could well get his chance at Barcelona if Luis Enrique were to return to Barcelona as coach.
But, the two Manchester giants as well as Arsenal and Liverpool (who both have plundered the Barca La Masia academy before) look well placed to bring Rafinha to England.