Arsenal will sign 16-year-old Joel Lopez from Barcelona this summer.
Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo claims that Joel Lopez will join Arsenal from FC Barcelona this summer. The Gunners were heavily linked with the youngster’s signing. The Spanish outlet also reports that along with Joel Lopez, Barcelona will also be losing another La Masia talent, Pablo Moreno, to Juventus.
The 16-year old left-back is at Barcelona since the age of 7. According to reports in Spain, the Joel Lopez is an attacking full-back. Some media reports also linked Lopez to Merseyside club Liverpool in the past.
Raul Sanhelli, Arsenal’s head of football relations seems to have played a part in luring the youngster. Sanhelli was formerly with Barcelona. If Joel Lopez joins, Arsenal would only need to pay training compensation.
According to Sport, Barcelona tried to tie down Joel Lopez to a new contract. However, Joel Lopez denied Barca’s offer and expressed his desire to join Arsenal.
Arsenal had made it an habit to sign youngsters from Barcelona in the past. Previously, Arsenal has signed the likes of Cesc Fabregas and Hector Bellerin from Barca’s youth ranks. Fabregas went on to captain Arsenal in the future, before coming back to Barcelona and eventually joining Chelsea.
Arsenal’s current crop of left-backs include Nacho Monreal and Sead Kolasinac. While Joel Lopez is still young, Arsenal look to boost their youth academy with the signing of the 15-year old.
Arsenal have already completed the signing of Stephan Lichtsteiner from Juventus, and Bernd Leno from Bayer Leverkusen. The Gunners’ boss is also keen on signing Ever Banega from Sevilla.