Arsenal’s loan move for Denis Suarez is stalling because of Barcelona’s demands to agree a permanent deal in the summer worth about £20million.
Gunners boss Unai Emery is keen to bolster his squad this month but the club’s lack of available transfer funds means they are restricted to temporary deals until the end of the season.
Arsenal are keen to acquire Suarez on loan with an option to buy but Barcelona have insisted that they make a firm commitment on both aspects of the proposed transfer now, including a willingness to pay the full sum up front rather than in instalments.
The Gunners have so far proved unwilling to meet Barca’s stipulations and a deal therefore looks unlikely, although there is just over a week before the transfer window closes and so either club has time to change its position.
Suarez has been left out of Barcelona’s squad for tonight’s meeting with Sevilla.
Part of the issue centres on Suarez’s contract. His agreement expires in the summer of 2020 and Barcelona are concerned that if they loan Suarez to Arsenal but then fail to complete a permanent deal, he will command a significantly lower fee.
There is speculation Barcelona have offered Suarez the chance to extend his deal with the club to offset that risk but he is reluctant to sign.
Emery believes Suarez’s flexibility can be a useful asset in the second half of the campaign; he has primarily played as a central midfielder but the Spaniard used him as a winger on both flanks when the pair were at Sevilla.
But there is some reluctance to commit a significant portion of Arsenal’s summer transfer budget on Suarez while other areas of the team require attention, specifically at centre-back.
Juventus remain highly likely to sign Aaron Ramsey but the exact details of his departure remain vague, with the possibility he could leave Arsenal this month.
The Gunners have expressed an interest in signing James Rodriguez from Bayern Munich — the midfielder is on loan from Real Madrid but that agreement can be cut short for a £3m fee. Selling Ramsey would help finance incomings and Arsenal may accept £10m if Juventus can be encouraged.
Emery is keen to keep Ramsey until the summer, believing him to be a useful asset, and the Gunners are unlikely to push for both Rodriguez and Suarez now if Ramsey does not leave until the end of the campaign.