Barcelona have been handed a massive boost in completing the signing of Arthur as the Gremio midfielder is ready to snub advances from Champions League winners Real Madrid in order to seal a switch to Camp Nou.
According to Spanish publication Sport, the 21-year-old has drawn interest from top European clubs in recent times, which includes the likes of the Catalan club and the European champions. It was believed the Blaugrana were leading the race for his signature.
Real joined the race for Arthur’s signature and are determined to derail Barcelona’s efforts in signing the player. However, the Madrid-based outfit’s effort to land the midfielder has come at a time where it is very difficult to “torpedo” their rival’s efforts in signing the South American star.
Barcelona have seen in the past that Real did try to hijack their bid in signing the likes of Neymar and Vinicius Junior, along with Philippe Coutinho. The latter has still not joined either of the club as he is currently plying his services at Liverpool.
Florentino Perez was keen on beating Barcelona in completing the signing of Vinicius. Real splashed €61m (£54.1m, $72.7m) on the teenager, despite having €45m (£39.9m, $53.7m) release clause in his contract.
Sport claims it will be an uphill task for Real to replicate the same when it comes to signing Arthur. It is believed that the midfielder will make a decision on his future and his agent and family will have no influence in convincing him to select his next destination.
Arthur has a release clause of €50m (£44.3m, $59.6m) at Gremio. The player was already seen with Barcelona shirt alongside the club’s technical secretary Robert Fernandez and the European giants were forced to issue an apology.
Gremio executive football director Andre Zanotta earlier admitted that Arthur will be allowed to leave the club if the proposal is deemed fit for the Brazilian outfit.
“Obviously the financial situation is far from comfortable. But we have to be careful not to compromise out sporting project. Of course we would like to keep Arthur until 2021…,” Zanotta told Globo Esporte.
“There is nothing concrete yet but there have been a lot of speculations. Many times their desire is to follow their career in Europe and you have to respect that too. If you get a proposal that fits Grêmio and the footballer we will talk. We don’t necessarily have to do it right now [in the January window].
“They admitted that they made a mistake, they know it was something that can’t do,” he added when asked if the leaked picture of Arthur with the Barcelona shirt could complicate future talks. “But we do not have to create any kind of friction with Barcelona. They called us and they admitted the mistake.”
Sport further claims that more contacts from Barcelona with Gremio in their efforts to land Arthur will only make it difficult for Real to land the midfielder. They also go on to stress that it is “only a matter of time” before the deal in signing the Brazilian midfielder will be completed. – IBTimes