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How Barcelona decision could directly impact Arsenal’s Raheem Sterling transfer

Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal have been seriously linked with a move for 26-year-old Manchester City winger Raheem Sterling for some time but are said to be facing competition from Barcelona. The talented winger is known to have spent special time training under Arteta when the former was the main assistant coach under Pep Guardiola at the Etihad.

However Arsenal could be facing major competition for Sterling from La Liga’s woeful Barcelona who are now reportedly interested to pursue a deal with the winger who’s been allegedly looking for greener pastures that will give him regular playing time.

The Gunners have been linked with a swoop for the England forward after it was alleged that Etihad stadium coach Guardiola could likely sell Sterling as th e latter’s contract continues to run out as he is also desirous to refreshing his squad. With the move in the summer having failed to come to fruition, the former Liverpool man has since made it known that he is open to other clubs either abroad or in the Premier League in the search for more first-team football playing time.

Talking to FT Business of Sport US Summit, Sterling said: “If there was the opportunity to go somewhere else for more game time I would be open to it at this moment in time.

“As I said, football is the most important thing to me — challenges that I have set myself from a young age and dreams as well.”

That aforementioned admission might well have given the Gunners plenty of encouragement in a renewed move for the 26-year-old but they also face competition from the Nou Camp.

Journalist Gerard Romero has gone on record to say that the next coach, Xavi Hernandes, now reportedly taking the reins from t he newly sacked Ronald Koeman is a big fan of the Etihad attacker attacker, viewing him him as an ideal option for the Barcelona Cruyff-ian 4-3-3 system that he intends on deploying with the Catalonians when he officially takes over the reins.

Of course, it also remains to be seen whether the Blaugranas are able to seriously pusue the Etihad winger even when Xavi officially steps in as the new Camp Nou boss as Barcelona is long known to be heavily riddled with debts to the point of almost being bankrupt. That being the case, it shouldn’t make any difference at all to either Sterling or Arsenal when ex-midfielder Xavi walks in as the club’s new manager and and is unable to follow through on his initial interest in Sterling.

According to various sources, the club are currently £1billion in debt so it seems highly unlikely then that Barca would be able to pay out a considerable fee for Sterling who is valued at £81million as per transfermarkt – an amount well out of reach of the current-day Barcelona who are finding it extremely difficult to rub together two coins.

How the mighty have fallen.

Credit: Football Tribe Malaysia