Barcelona coach, Quique Setien, could well have a new world-class player at his disposal next season after the club agreed terms with him, but for any deal to be concluded, there’s one small deal that needs to be agreed to.
Inter Milan have made it known that they want Arthur Melo in part exchange for Lautaro Martinez, but, at this stage, the Catalans are unwilling to part with the midfielder according to Spanish football expert, Guillem Balague.
“Inter is a different situation, Inter would like him to be part of a deal for Lautaro Martinez, that’s the player that Barcelona have got an agreement with. There’s an agreement between Barcelona and the player, the player and Barcelona, that’s all. Not Inter and Barcelona and because of it, it needs to be agreed.
“Inter is open to negotiate, Lautaro Martinez obviously happy to go to Barcelona, Barcelona happy to have him, but they cannot afford him in terms of only paying cash so they want to offer players.
“How about [Jean-Clair] Todibo? How about [Samuel] Umtiti? How about [Ivan] Rakitic? And Inter have said ‘how about Arthur?’. The idea is not to sell Arthur and Arthur doesn’t want to leave Barcelona, but everybody at Barcelona is for sale.
“So this week the message from Barcelona is that Arthur is not for sale, Arthur’s saying ‘I don’t want to leave’ and of course Quique Setien wants him to stay.”
It’s entirely understandable why Antonio Conte would be interested in the Brazilian. Since his arrival at the Camp Nou, Arthur has given Barcelona’s midfield a sense of balance, and his skill set has seen him right at home there.
To that end, losing him isn’t something the club are prepared to contemplate, but with Inter showing no interest in any of the other players being offered in exchange for Martinez, just how much the Argentinian is wanted by the Catalans will soon become clear.