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Manchester United End Interest In Arsenal Star After Refusing To Accept Swap Deal

Vermaelen will not be heading to Old Trafford after all.

Despite Arsene Wenger admitting club captain Thomas Vermaelen could leave Arsenal this summer, it will not be to Manchester United after a swap deal is rejected by the 13-time Premier League champions.

“I’ve said since the start of pre-season that Thomas [Vermaelen] could leave us because he needs to play now,” Wenger was quoted by the club’s website.

“Ideally yes [I would rather sell Vermaelen abroad]. It is an option. I don’t want to tell you [which clubs are interested] but we have offers from abroad as well.”

The Telegraph reports that FC Barcelona are the club leading the race for the 28-year-old and submitted a £10m bid for the defender on Wednesday.

The Catalans are looking for a long-term replacement for skipper Carles Puyol, who retired from football at the end of last season.

United though have also been keeping close tabs on the Belgium international, despite the fact Wenger is unsure about selling a player to a direct rival.

The swap deal that has reported to have been rejected by the Red Devils could involve a number of players, with the Gunners having been linked with Tom Cleverley (Guardian), Phil Jones, Chris Smalling (Mirror) and Nani (Mirror).

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