Exclusive: Arsenal, Chelsea advancing in pursuit of deadly striker after Barcelona negotiations stall

Vitor Roque Athletico

TEAMtalk understands Arsenal and Chelsea are both making progress as they look to sign Athletico Paranaense sensation Vitor Roque, while Barcelona’s discussions for the striker have stalled.

Roque is only 18 years old but is already making a name for himself in South America. He broke onto the scene for Athletico Paranaense last season and has already notched four goals in seven games this term.

Roque also helped Brazil U20s win the South American championship by bagging six goals in eight appearances, and he has since been promoted to his nation’s senior squad.

Due to the teenager’s brilliant form for club and country, it is no surprise that he is being tipped to gain a big transfer this summer.

Barcelona, Arsenal, Chelsea and Newcastle are just some of the teams to have been linked with his services.

Last month, it was reported that Barca were getting close to snaring him. But they have lost ground and are now at serious risk of losing out on Roque to a Premier League outfit.

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Transfer insider Graeme Bailey has told TEAMtalk that Roque will definitely be available for transfer later this year as Athletico Paranaense simply cannot keep him.

TEAMtalk can confirm that Barca had been leading the chase, but those negotiations have stalled due to the Spanish club’s financial difficulties. Barca have proposed an initial loan with an obligation to buy next year, but that has not gone down too well in Brazil.

Arsenal, Chelsea most likely clubs to get Vitor Roque

Lost of Premier League sides have looked into a potential deal, including Manchester United, Tottenham, Aston Villa and West Ham. But Arsenal and Chelsea’s interest is far more advanced.

Arsenal and Chelsea have both been in contact with Roque’s camp. The two London clubs are pushing hard to sign him as they know the opportunity to agree a transfer for €40m (£35.1m) is one that is simply too good to turn down.

Meanwhile, Arsenal are being tipped to frustrate Jurgen Klopp by signing a Bayern Munich player before Liverpool.