Arsenal handed big lift as Barcelona delay deal to sign defensive target

Date published: Thursday 28th January 2021 11:38 - Robert McCarthy

Barcelona are reportedly ready to delay their long-running pursuit of Manchester City centre-back Eric Garcia, which could open the door for Arsenal.

Garcia came through the youth ranks at Barca before making the switch to Manchester in 2017.

The 20-year-old has emerged as a promising talent at The Etihad. He has made 10 Premier League starts, plus five in the Champions League.

However, Garcia’s contract is due to expire this summer, leaving him free to negotiate a deal with European clubs.

Barcelona have been the frontrunners for his signature, although the Gunners have emerged as new contenders.

And Mikel Arteta’s hopes of signing the player he coached at City, when assistant to Pep Guardiola, have been boosted.

Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo claims that the LaLiga giants are putting the deal on hold for now, as they await the results of the upcoming presidential election.

Barca boss Ronald Koeman is desperate to bolster his back line, with Gerard Pique turning 34 this week. Samuel Umtiti is also out of favour, leaving Clement Lenglet, Ronald Araujo and Oscar Mingueza as his main options.

But it would appear that his hands are tied, given the current uncertainity at the Catalan club.

They risk missing out on Garcia if they do not act quickly, and that could see Arteta act.

Odegaard Tottenham snub revealed

New Arsenal signing Martin Odegaard reportedly snubbed a move to north London rivals Tottenham before heading to The Emirates.

Norwegian football journalist Arilas Ould-Saada, as cited by sportslens, claims that Spurs made a move to sign the Norwegian on loan for the rest of the season. However, the 22-year-old opted for a switch to the Emirates instead.

Odegaard was identified as a solution to Arsenal’s lack of midfield creativity. He will wear the number 11 shirt previously associated with Mesut Ozil, who has now joined Fernerbache.

The attacking midfielder has struggled for game time at the Bernabeu and impressed on loan at Real Sociedad last season.

Spurs were said to be looking at Odegaard as a potential replacement for Dele Alli. Read more…

 

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