Arsenal started negotiations with €20m-rated La Liga goalkeeper

The Blaugrana have turned down Neto’s transfer request with the shot-stopper being targeted by the London giants. Arsenal are looking to sign a new shot-stopper to provide stronger contest for Bernd Leno, with summer signing Alex Runarsson failing to impress since his arrival from Dijon.

The Gunners had explored the possibility of signing Brazil international last summer but La Liga giants would not entertain a loan deal and were holding out for an £18m fee. Arsenal have reignited their interest in Neto this month, and the goalkeeper is pushing to leave Barcelona.

But the Dutch coach says the club have denied the 31-year-old goalkeeper’s request to switch teams before the end of the month. ‘If we talk about players, we talk about youngsters,’ said Ronald Koeman. ‘I’ve said several times for some players it could be good for them to have more minutes to improve as players.’

‘Neto is a different case, it’s true his agent asked the club to move on and we said no because he’s important for us and we want to have all positions covered.’ The Brazilian shot-stopper has played nine games for Blaugrana this campaign but stays the second-choice option behind Marc-Andre ter Stegen.

Mikel Arteta suggested this week that the Gunners were looking to sign new competition for Leno before the window closes. ‘There is nothing there yet,’ said Mikel Arteta. ‘We are assessing the situation with the three positions on the goalkeeping area and we will find a different solution, probably in this window.’

‘The discussion we had in the summer within the club are a little bit different to what actually happened because of the transfer window and the situation that developed with Emi Martinez.’