Arsenal have been dealt a significant blow in their pursuit of Barcelona and France star Samuel Umtiti, after the player confirmed he will not be leaving the club this summer.
As per the Daily Star, Arsenal are in the hunt to sign the French international, with Unai Emery eyeing him up as a top target.
However, it doesn’t seem like Umtiti will be going anywhere this summer, as the Star’s report also states that, when speaking to RTL France, Umtiti stated “I have a contract, I feel happy in Barcelona. I had a complicated season, but I will still be at Barcelona next season.”
These words will not come as good news for the Gunners, as it looks as if the defender has ruled out sealing any kind of move away from the Nou Camp this summer.
Arsenal absolutely must dip into the transfer market to bolster their defensive options this summer given how they performed at the back last season.
Had the north London side had a good defence, they would’ve almost certainly secured a place in the top four, and potentially gotten their hands on the Europa League as well.
Umtiti would’ve definitely been a class signing for Arsenal, as although his performance levels dropped this season, the Frenchman is still one of the best centre backs around.
CalcioMercato have reported recently that, via Don Balon, Barca are after €80M (£71M) for Umtiti, a price the Gunners may not have been able to afford given the fact that the Daily Star’s report notes that their budget for this summer is around £40M.
Looks like Emery and Co are going to have to turn their attentions elsewhere after this one…