Arsenal and La Liga side FC Barcelona have begun negotiations over a swap deal involving Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Philippe Coutinho.
According to Sport, the Gunners and the Catalan giants have opened discussions over a possible exchange which could see Aubameyang head to Barcelona and Coutinho return to England.
As per the report, ‘all parties’ believe a swap deal would be beneficial for both clubs. Arsenal are in the market for a creative midfielder. However, Martin Odegaard is now close to joining the Gunners as reported by Fabrizio Romano.
Indeed, it appears that Barcelona are the ones pushing for this deal to go through. Sergio Aguero is already out injured until November, leaving the club with just Memphis Depay and Martin Braithwaite as Ronald Koeman’s main centre-forward options.
Insider View: Arsenal can do better than Coutinho if Barcelona want Aubameyang
Swap deals are not commonplace in football. But Arsenal are a side who have been involved in two major transfers involving such a practice, yet neither worked out well for the Gunners.
Arsenal gained William Gallas when Chelsea signed Ashley Cole. With the Frenchman becoming arguably the worst club captain in the modern history of the club. Whilst another swap deal in 2018 saw Alexis Sanchez head to Manchester United in exchange for Henrikh Mkhitaryan.
And Arsenal risks making a similar error if they are to accept Coutinho in exchange for Aubameyang. Whilst the Brazilian was once one of the Premier League’s best talents, the player of today is a shadow of his former self.
Moreover, with Odegaard close to joining, a playmaker is now no longer a problem area for Arsenal. Whereas positions such as right-back, central midfield and goalkeeper will now take priority over a second creative signing.