• Barcelona may hold off interest on Matteo Guendouzi
  • Nigel Winterburn said Barcelona taking in Guendouzi for a hefty fee seems like a "long shot"
  • Arsenal legend believes Guendouzi still needs to improve to make the grade at Barcelona

Matteo Guendouzi heading to Barcelona is not likely to happen, according to Arsenal legend Nigel Winterburn, who said the midfielder lacks the skills to make the grade at the club.

With rumors circulating that Guendouzi is on his way out, Real and Barca have been mentioned as potential landing spots for the 21-year-old Arsenal midfielder. However, Winterburn, who is currently a pundit for BT Sport, said he believes the French player may need to improve first before Barcelona would consider taking him in.

"I think there would need to be a huge improvement in Guendouzi’s game for Barcelona to be willing to take him," Winterburn told "He’s a young kid who’s made big improvements but there’s a long way to go, so that would surprise me if it turns out to be true."

Winterburn added that Barcelona paying Arsenal's possibly hefty fee for Guendouzi seems to be a "long shot."

"Arsenal wouldn’t just let him go easily even if they do decide to sell him, it would need to be a substantial fee, so would Barcelona think he’s worth the risk? If the price is right, maybe, but it seems like a bit of a long shot to me," the former Gunners defender said.

At the moment, the future of Guendouzi remains unknown, with reports claiming that Arsenal could deal him away this summer. The 21-year-old has been in the hot seat lately, something that has worsened his relationship with manager Mikel Arteta.

As mentioned in a previous report, Guendouzi may have drawn the last straw following an altercation with Neal Maupay of Brighton back in June. During that game, the French player seemingly tried to provoke Maupay by gloating about their higher salaries.

Arteta was pretty unhappy about his actions and said that this was not the kind of culture he was trying to establish over at Emirates Stadium.

Probably aware that his time was up, Guendouzi allegedly informed Arsenal management that he would be leaving after this season.

Aside from Barcelona, Real Madrid is believed to be interested in the troubled football player, with both clubs reportedly ready to assume the remaining two years of his contract. Guendouzi is earning roughly $49,000 a week.

Though their relationship may have been strained, Arteta still recently challenged Guendouzi to prove himself by supporting the rebuilding plans of the Gunners and show he deserves to stay.

Since that Brighton incident, Guendouzi has not been included in the squad. He has since trained away from the first team due to concerns over his attitude and behavior.

Unless a sudden change happens, it appears Guendouzi is likely to move out.

For now, Arteta and the Gunners prefer to focus on the task at hand. They are coming off a 1-1 draw with Leicester City and are currently sitting at the eighth spot of the Premier League Table. They trail fourth-placer Chelsea F.C. by nine points.

Matteo Guendouzi
Arsenal's French midfielder Matteo Guendouzi Getty Images | OLI SCARFF/AFP