Reports: Barcelona and Arsenal in talks over stunning swap deal
What’s the story?
Barcelona completed the club record signing of Ousmane Dembele from Borussia Dortmund last week and have been continuously pursuing Philippe Coutinho, despite Liverpool's reluctance to sell.
According to Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo, the Catalans are now targeting alternatives to the Brazilian and consider Arsenal's Mesut Ozil to be in the same mould and want to capitalize on the Gunners' interest in Arda Turan to complete a move for the German World Cup winner.
According to the reports, the two clubs are in talks over a Turan-Ozil swap deal, with the former deemed surplus to requirements at Camp Nou, while the latter is reluctant to extend his contract with the Emirates outfit.
In case you didn’t know…
Mesut Ozil's arrival ushered in a new era at Arsenal under Arsene Wenger, which saw the club win 3 FA Cups and as many Community Shields. However, the club have failed to challenge for the Premier League title and this has led to 3 of their star players including Ozil, not extending their contracts with the club.
The German World Cup winner's contract expires at the end of the current season, following which he can walk away on a free.
On the other hand, Arda Turan moved to Barcelona at the start of the 2015/16 season but after spending 6 months on the bench - due to the Catalan outfit's transfer ban - the Turkish international has failed to establish himself as a key member of the squad.
The 30-year-old made 30 appearances for the Blaugrana last term, scoring 13 goals while assisting another 7 but has been deemed surplus to requirements at Camp Nou.
The heart of the matter
With Mesut Ozil refusing to extend his contract with the Gunners, and with Arsenal apparently interested in the services of Arda Turan, Barcelona want to cash in on the situation and want to bring the German to Camp Nou, to link up with Lionel Messi and company.
Barcelona need a player to succeed Andreas Iniesta, who has reached the twilight of his career, and wanted Coutinho to be that person. However, Liverpool's reluctance to sell has forced them to look at other alternatives, and they just might have found a better replacement for Iniesta in Ozil.
Bringing Mesut Ozil - a former Real Madrid star - to Camp Nou makes complete sense for Barcelona, who will not only be getting a playmaker in his prime but it will also help take off some of the burden from Lionel Messi.
However, a swap deal in which Arsenal lose one of their best players and get a Barcelona reject may not make complete sense for the Gunners, who are currently in the midst of a crisis of sorts. We will have to wait and watch how this one pans out with the transfer deadline less than 2 days away.