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Arsenal set to miss out on another target, with Dutchman to remain at Barca.
The 42-year-old coach was full of praise for the Dutch attacker and stated that he is counting on the former PSV ace as he enters his first campaign at the Camp Nou helm.
Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova has ended speculation linking Ibrahim Afellay with a move toArsenal by revealing that the Dutchman will not leave the club in the summer transfer window.
Barca reportedly offered Afellay to both Arsenal and Inter in an attempt to raise funds for the transfer of Athletic Bilbao midfielder Javi Martinez, but Vilanova has insisted that the 26-year-old will remain at the club – at least until January.
“Afellay is a player of great class, there is no doubt about it,” Vilanova told Dutch magazine NUsport. “Like always, he is part of our selection. We will begin the season with him.”
It looks like it could be a bad day for Arsenal fans.
This morning, the ‘papers were full of speculation that Robin van Persie is set to complete his move away from the Emirates, with Juventus closing in on the Dutchman’s signature.
It now seems as if two of the north Londoners main transfer targets are remaining in Spain. This afternoon Malaga dismissed speculation linking Santi Cazorla with the Gunners, insisting they will not even negotiate his sale.
And Barcelona boss Tito Vilanova has followed suit, dashing Arsene Wenger’s hopes of snaring Dutch winger Ibrahim Afellay.
With Andrei Arshavin set to leave, Wenger is clearly in the market for a creative wide man and the Frenchman may be prepared to look closer to home after missing out on the La Liga pair. And there does seem to be a number of such players available this summer. What odds on Arsenal now pursuing Junior Hoilett, Victor Moses or even Chelsea’s Daniel Sturridge?