Chelsea has moved well ahead of Arsenal in the pursuit for Leeds United forward Raphinha. The Blues have agreed to match the Elland Road outfit's £60 million valuation, but are yet to agree personal terms with the Brazilian.

It will come as a major blow for the Gunners, who were leading the chase until Tuesday, before Chelsea trumped their London rivals' offer. Arsenal are not giving up, and are still waiting to see if they can make a late bid if the Blues fail to meet the player's demands in terms of wages and length of contract.

Mikel Arteta was hoping to make Raphinha his fifth signing after completing three deals since the transfer window got underway, with a fourth imminent. Manchester City forward Gabriel Jesus will join Matt Turner, Marquinhos and Fabio Vieira in at the Emirates Stadium this summer.

Arsenal has been in talks with Leeds since early June, and even had a bid turned down last week. The north Londoners were expected to hold further talks this week, with a second bid planned before being usurped by Chelsea.

Raphinha of Leeds United Robin Jones/Getty Images

The Stamford Bridge club is looking to make a massive splash in the market following Todd Boehly's take over. The American billionaire is keen to realise all of Thomas Tuchel's wishes, which includes Raphinha and Manchester City winger Raheem Sterling.

"Raphinha deal. Key hours ahead for Chelsea as they will try to reach full agreement with Brazilian winger and his agent Deco on personal terms, really important step," as per Italian transfer expert Fabrizio Romano. "Club agreement with Leeds for £60/65m total fee - Arsenal tried until yesterday... and now waiting."

Chelsea are expected to close the deal for Raphinha in the coming days, after which they will start pushing for Sterling. The Blues have already opened talks with the Premier League champions, who are open to letting the England international join their rivals this summer.

Apart from the two forwards, the 2021 Champions League winners are also in the market for defensive signings. Tuchel lost centre-backs Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger this summer, and is keen to bring in replacements for the duo.

Juventus star Matthijs de Ligt and Sevilla's Jules Kounde are top of the Blues' wanted list. The former is expected to cost close to £100 million, while the latter is valued at £55 million. Tuchel is expected to focus on his backline once the club agrees deals for Raphinha and Sterling.

Thomas Tuchel
Thomas Tuchel is the new man in charge at Chelsea Frank Augstein/POOL