NEWS
Tuesday January 9 2018
Inter, Celta want Rafinha

Inter will rival Celta Vigo for the signing of Barcelona midfielder Rafinha Alcantara on a loan deal until the end of the season, say reports in Spain.

The 24-year-old played for the Galician side in the 2013/14 season under Luis Enrique but Diario Sport now report the Milanese giants have joined Celta in the race for his signature.

The midfielder is said to be willing to return to Estadio Balaidos to play under Juan Carlos Unzue – Enrique’s previous assistant at both Barca and Celta.

The Brazilian damaged his knee ligaments in last season’s 4-1 victory at Granada in early April and has not featured for the Catalan giants since.

In December he returned to first-team training although the midfielder – who scored seven goals in 28 appearances last season – may find playing opportunities limited.

First-team chances will be limited further following the arrival of Paulinho over summer alongside the form of Ivan Rakitic, while Philippe Coutinho has now also joined.

Rafinha – whose brother Thiago plays for Bayern Munich and Spain – has ‘a dream’ to play in the World Cup next summer and is said to be trusted by Brazil Coach Tite, but no regular football could jeopardise his place in the squad.

The player was previously linked with moves to Juventus, Arsenal and Liverpool but interest in him has quietened since summer.

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