Arsenal learn Barcelona transfer ‘request’ as £51m sale ‘against Flick’s will’ has ‘direct’ Man Utd ‘link’

Lewis Oldham
Arsenal transfer target Jules Kounde
Jules Kounde has been linked with a move to Arsenal.

According to reports, Arsenal have received a ‘request’ from Spanish giants FC Barcelona as they attempt to sign France international Jules Kounde.

The 25-year-old was heavily linked with Premier League clubs after impressing for Sevilla in La Liga but joined Barcelona in 2022 for around £42m.

Kounde has impressed for Barcelona in recent seasons. His versatility has been pivotal as he has regularly been used at right-back and centre-back.

Despite being one of Barcelona’s better performers during the 2023/24 campaign, it is being widely reported that they are willing to let him leave this summer as they attempt to balance the books.

It has previously been reported that Barcelona are looking to sell Kounde ‘against Hansi Flick’s will’ amid interest from Premier League pair Arsenal and Manchester United.

If Kounde joins Arsenal, he would likely provide competition for Ben White at right-back and William Saliba/Gabriel Magalhaes at centre-back.

With Arsenal also in the market for a new striker, right winger and centre-midfielder, it’s clear that head coach Mikel Arteta and technical director Edu are looking to build a squad with two players of similar quality in each position as they look to win the Premier League title next season and beyond.

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According to a report in Spain, Barcelona have submitted a ‘request’ to Arsenal for Kounde with the La Liga giants demanding £51m for the player’s services.

It is also noted that Kounde’s future is ‘directly linked’ to Uraguay international Ronald Araujo, who is being heavily linked with a move to Man Utd. 

The report claims Barcelona would not give Kounde permission to leave if Araujo goes. The latter player is perhaps more likely to move on as he is also being linked with Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich.

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Bologna defender Riccardo Calafiori is also being linked with Arsenal and their club chief – Giovanni Sartori – has indicated that the Italy international is more likely to join a club abroad than he is to join Turin giants Juventus.

“We only signed Calafiori 12 months ago, so we’ll see what happens, but in our minds we want to keep him,” Sartori said.

“There has been talk of Juventus, but also many other clubs. If we were to receive big offers, we’d have to think about it.

“I don’t think he will go to Juventus, it will probably be abroad, but I repeat we will try to keep him.”