Staggering Barcelona raid on Newcastle puts Arsenal on pole to sign top La Liga star

Newcastle duo Alexander Isak and Bruno Guimaraes celebrate

Newcastle duo Alexander Isak and Bruno Guimaraes celebrate

Arsenal have been given a great chance to sign long-term target Martin Zubimendi, as Barcelona have moved away from the Real Sociedad star and are instead pursuing Newcastle United ace Bruno Guimaraes, according to reports.

Arsenal bolstered their midfield over the summer with the club-record arrival of Declan Rice, who joined from West Ham United in a £105million deal. They also spent £65m to sign Kai Havertz from ‘Big Six’ rivals Chelsea.

Despite Rice and Havertz quickly establishing themselves as important players for Mikel Arteta – particularly Rice – Arsenal look set to chase another new midfielder in 2024.

That is because Thomas Partey is no longer a reliable option for Arteta, with the 30-year-old once again plagued by injuries and being limited to just five appearances so far this season.

Arsenal made an approach to sign Zubimendi in the summer, but they could not convince the Spaniard to leave his boyhood club.

On November 11, it emerged that Arsenal have once again landed on Zubimendi as a transfer target ahead of the new year. Spanish outlet Sport then revealed that Arsenal will have to overcome Barca in order to sign him, with Xavi understood to be a big fan.

READ MORE: Newcastle intend to sign Liverpool icon in game-changing January splurge; midfield pair also wanted

There has now been a big update on Zubimendi’s future, as fellow Spanish source Mundo Deportivo have cast serious doubt over whether Barca will submit an offer for him. Instead, they suggest that Xavi will go after a different type of midfielder.

Newcastle star Guimaraes is supposedly the player Xavi ultimately wants to sign. The Brazil international is a fan-favourite at St James’ Park, with his classy performances making him one of the best all-around midfielders in the Premier League since his arrival in January 2022.

Guimaraes to Barcelona, Zubimendi to Arsenal?

This is not the first time Guimaraes has been linked with a huge switch to La Liga, as Real Madrid have previously been named as potential suitors for him.

Any transfer will cost big money though, as Guimaraes has a £100million release clause in his contract at Newcastle.

The 26-year-old is not the only midfielder Barca are keen on, as they also like the look of Everton star Amadou Onana, Madrid’s Aurelien Tchouameni and Youssouf Fofana of Monaco.

Arsenal will be delighted if Barca move for Guimaraes or any other of those three players, as this should give them a free run at Zubimendi.

Gunners recruitment chiefs have been impressed by the 24-year-old’s solid performances over the past few seasons. He also boasts a decent amount of experience at the top level, having represented Sociedad in both the Champions League and Europa League, while also playing three times for Spain this year.

But it is clear that Arsenal will need to put on a big charm offensive to complete this deal, having been rejected by Zubimendi in the past.

Midfield is not the only position Arteta is keen to strengthen in the near future, as he also wants a new centre-forward who can battle Gabriel Jesus for his starting spot.

Arsenal have been credited with an interest in a striker who has scored 15 goals in 18 games already this term, and they have just found out exactly how much he will cost.