However, Barcelona won the race for Raphinha as Chelsea turned their attention to Raheem Sterling instead.
After a difficult start at the Camp Nou, Raphinha has become a key fixture of the side in recent weeks in Ousmane Dembele’s absence.
But Barcelona president Joan Laporta admitted earlier this month that in order to sign new players this summer Barcelona will have to offload some too.
‘Barca will surely have to sign a full-back and also a center-back as long as there is a good opportunity in this case,’ said Laporta.
‘I think a striker will also have to arrive, but someone will have to come out.’
The admission that ‘someone will have to come out’ has resulted in speculation that Raphinha – who would fetch the biggest fee of Barcelona’s frontline – will be sold.
Sport say Chelsea have been alerted to the Brazilian’s situation and they will consider making an offer to test Barcelona’s resolve.
Raphinha, for his part, is happy in Spain but he will reluctantly return to England if it’s made clear to him that he’s not part of Xavi’s plans.
Frenkie de Jong is another who could fetch big money for Barcelona but the Dutchman has made it clear he wants to remain at the Camp Nou.
The club are less open to selling the Netherlands international to Manchester United than they were last summer, as Busquets could leave the club in the close season.