Arsenal stand firm over Barcelona transfer demand with £12m wonderkid move lined up

Arsenal are eyeing up a move for Mikayil Faye
-Credit: (Image: Getty Images)

Arsenal are eyeing up a move for Barcelona defender Mikayil Faye.

The Gunners are yet to get going in the summer transfer window after they missed out on Benjamin Sesko, who has decided to stay at RB Leipzig and sign a new long-term contract. Mikel Arteta is keen to bolster his squad as they look to challenge Manchester City for the title once again.

Although a new centre forward is understood to be the priority target area for the Gunners, they are looking at strengthening other positions, including at the back. Ajax's Jorrel Hato, Everton's Jarrad Branthwaite and Nottingham Forest's Murillo have emerged as potential defensive options.

But now, HITC have reported that Arsenal have asked about the availability of Faye after his move to Porto stalled. The 19-year-old is considered one of the brightest prospects at Barcelona, but he is keen for first-team football having failed to make a senior appearance since his move from Kustosija last June.

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Faye has instead been a regular in the Barcelona B set up, playing 33 matches in the third-tier of Spanish football during the 2023/24 season. Porto have agreed terms to sign Faye but are still trying to hammer out a deal, with Barcelona wanting €15million (£12m) plus a buy-back clause.

This has meant that his proposed move to Portugal has stalled and Arsenal have since asked about the centre-back, with the Gunners wanting to add at least one new defender this summer. It's understood Arsenal have tracked Faye for a 'long time' and his ability to play anywhere across the back four has appealed those in north London.

One stumbling block in any deal could be Barcelona's demand on insisting on a buy-back clause for the defender. This is said to be a non-starter for Arsenal if they explore a possible move. This would suggest that the chances of the Gunners landing Faye this summer are minimal.