- Roque freezes Arsenal's attempt to sign him
- Wants to join Barcelona
- Xavi has given the green signal to pursue him
WHAT HAPPENED? Arsenal's Edu Gaspar had opened talks with Athletico Paranaense, but the player has set his heart on a move to Spain to join Barca. The Blaugrana are one of the many admirers of the 18-year-old striker and are optimistic about sealing the deal in the summer transfer window.
🏆 TOP STORY: Lineker is BACK! MOTD host returns following BBC row
📣 HAVE YOUR SAY: Should we be calling Arsenal champions-elect?
🚨 MUST READ: Where are the NXGN wonderkids of 2016 now?
THE BIGGER PICTURE: However, Barcelona's complex financial situation and their struggles with La Liga's FFP rules might prove to be a stumbling block. Paranaense will not lower its asking price of £40m and is reported to have already rejected a £22m offer from the Catalan club.
AND WHAT'S MORE: Barcelona wants Roque to arrive this summer and partner Robert Lewandowski upfront. The player scored six goals in eight games in Brazil's recent South America U20 Championship triumph and is tipped to shine in Europe. Last season, he scored 10 goals and provided two assists in 44 matches in the Brazilian top-flight for Paranaense.
IN THREE PHOTOS:GettyGettyGetty Images
WHAT NEXT FOR ROQUE? The forward will hope that Barcelona can sort their financial complications and match the asking price of Paranaense so that he could complete the move to Spain in the summer.