Barcelona Transfer News: Arthur to Undergo Medical Amid Latest Rumours

Gill Clark@@gillclarkyFeatured Columnist IFebruary 21, 2018

PORTO ALEGRE, BRAZIL - SEPTEMBER 17: Arthur of Gremio during the match Gremio v Chapecoense as part of Brasileirao Series A 2017, at Arena do Gremio on September 17, 2017, in Porto Alegre, Brazil. (Photo by Lucas Uebel/Getty Images)
Lucas Uebel/Getty Images

Gremio midfielder Arthur is reportedly closing in on a move to Barcelona and is set to have a medical with Ernesto Valverde's side on Wednesday.

The two clubs have already agreed a deal worth €40 million, and he is expected to move to the Camp Nou in January 2019. Arthur is set to meet Barcelona technical secretary Robert Fernandez again and will have a medical on Wednesday, according to Sport's Joaquim Piera.

Brazilian football writer Paulo Freitas showed how the deal breaks down:

Arthur is viewed as a similar type of player as Barcelona greats Xavi Hernandez and Andres Iniesta, and at just 21 years  old, he looks to have a big future ahead of him. Barca have never really found an adequate replacement for Xavi, while Iniesta will turn 34 in May and is heading towards the end of his illustrious career.

A move to the Camp Nou would also allow Arthur to play alongside compatriot Philippe Coutinho, which is good news for Brazilian football, according to Selecao Brasileira:

Barcelona are enjoying a superb season as they sit seven points clear at the top of La Liga and are into the final of the Copa del Rey. The team are also in a good position in the UEFA Champions League, having drawn 1-1 in the first leg of their round-of-16 clash at Chelsea.

However, Valverde still appears to be searching for the right balance in midfield, and the team have not consistently produced their best free-flowing football, despite their superb results.

Rafael Hernandez of Barca fansite Grup 14 said the team need to shake up their midfield, even if they do have a successful campaign (Warning: Tweet contains NSFW language):

Yet Barcelona will still have to wait some time before they can use Arthur, as he is not due to arrive until January. Their pursuit of the Brazilian appears to have been complicated by the fact the club's three non-EU spots in the squad are currently taken up by Coutinho, Paulinho and Yerry Mina.

Per Mundo Deportivo (h/t Joe Short at the Daily Express), Coutinho has said he can acquire a Portuguese passport through his wife Aine, which should free up a spot for Arthur.  

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