Raphinha admits Ronaldinho ‘influenced’ decision to join Barcelona

Raphinha-Leeds United

New Barcelona winger Raphinha has admitted that watching former Ronaldinho play for the Catalan side in the 2000s made him want to sign for the Camp You side.

The Brazilian winger completed his move to Camp Nou on Friday. Before signing for the Spanish La Liga giants, he turned down the advances of Chelsea and Arsenal in order to seal a move from Leeds United to Catalonia. 

And speaking at his unveiling ceremony at Nou Camp, revealed that his love of Ronaldinho influenced where he wanted to go after leaving Elland Road.

“I started watching Barça when Ronaldinho came here. Everything that he achieved here definitely influenced my decision to come. I always wanted to come here,” Raphinha said via 90min.

“I was always hoping that one day I would be able to realise my dream since I was a kid, to form part of a team like Barça. We all have our different ways of playing, of course, so I’m very different [from Ronaldinho].”

Ronaldinho joined Barcelona from PSG in the summer of 2003 and won two La Liga titles and the club’s second ever Champions League with Barcelona, while he also claimed the 2005 Ballon d’Or.

After Raphinha completed his move to Barca, the Brazil legend took t social media to give his approval of the deal.

“Thank you Ryghtan, beautiful work!!! All the luck in the world to my friend Raphinha;” he posted on his Twitter account. 

Raphinha becomes the third arrival this summer after deals for Franck Kessie and Andreas Christensen from AC Milan and Chelsea on a free transfer.