Last updated 2 months ago | By Mirror
Arsenal are reportedly stepping up their efforts to sign Philippe Coutinho from Barcelona as the club seeks talks with the star's agent.
Coutinho is surplus to requirements at the Nou Camp and Barca are keen to offload him this summer to raise transfer funds.
A number of clubs have been linked with the Brazilian but Barca are yet to receive any concrete bids.
Chelsea and Tottenham are both believed to be keeping tabs on the 27-year-old's situation, but Arsenal could now steal a march on their Premier League rivals.
Le10 Sport report Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta 'dreams' of linking up with the midfielder at The Emirates and sees Coutinho as the ideal addition to his squad.
They add that Arsenal have already made plans to meet with Coutinho's agent Kia Joorabchian to discuss a potential transfer, with Arteta fully behind the move.
A stumbling block in the negotiations is likely to be a transfer fee and the player's wages, which has so far put off other potential suitors.
Coutinho has had a mixed season out on loan at Bayern Munich, who have refused to activate their option to buy clause in his contract.
With the coronanvirus crisis having a drastic impact on club finances, it looks unlikely Coutinho will move this summer for a big fee.
That could open up the prospect of an initial loan deal, but Barca would insist on an obligation to buy clause being included in any deal.
As yet there have been no enquiries from other clubs regarding Coutinho's availability, though Joorabchain is not concerned at the present time.
"At the moment, we have not spoken to anybody about any deals whatsoever," Joorabchian told talkSPORT.
"I think at the moment everyone’s concentration is regarding this pandemic and how football can restart the season in a secure environment and over the health and safety of everybody.
"I think the transfer side of things and where he will go or where people will go will come into play down the line when things have got back to some sort of normality."