KEY POINTS

  • Juve have agreed to pay $90 million for Barca's Arthur
  • Arthur, however, does not want to leave Messi and Co.
  • Arthur joined Barca ahead of the 2018-19 season

Juventus and FC Barcelona have struck a $90 million deal for Brazilian midfielder Arthur Melo, who reportedly is not ready to leave Lionel Messi and Co. ahead of the summer transfer market.

The deal has been reached despite Arthur, who joined the Catalans in 2018, making himself clear last month that he does not want to leave Barcelona.

According to Sky Sports, Juventus boss Maurizio Sarri is looking to build his midfield around Arthur. In an attempt to persuade the 23-year-old Brazilian, it is understood that Juventus have offered Arthur an increase in salary, compared to his deal with Barcelona. The player’s new wages are expected to be close to $6 million a year.

The 18-year-old kickstarted his professional career with the Serie A club Grêmio in 2015. He bagged a massive jump when he signed a six-year contract with Barcelona ahead of the 2018-19 season. Despite the presence of superstars such as Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Ivan Rakitic, and Philippe Coutinho, the young Brazilian has made his presence felt on the field in several instances.

Lionel Messi (R) celebrates with his Barcelona teammates after scoring the final goal in their 4-0 win at Mallorca on Saturday Lionel Messi (R) celebrates with his Barcelona teammates after scoring the final goal in their 4-0 win at Mallorca on Saturday Photo: AFP / JAIME REINA

However, that has not reflected on his goal-chart as he has managed only four goals in a tally of 74 games since 2018 across all tournaments.

Last month when Arthur was linked to Juventus, he said that his interest currently lies in continuing in Barcelona. 

“There will always be speculation but, sincerely, my idea is very clear. The only option that interests me is to continue at Barcelona. I'm very secure and relaxed. I feel really well here and, plus, I'm grateful to the club and technical staff for their confidence. This is yet another reason to be totally clear that my only desire is to continue,” the Brazilian midfielder said in an interview.

However, due to the financial crisis the club is currently facing following the coronavirus pandemic, Barcelona are looking to sell quite a few players to clear funds for their top targets that would help them rejuvenate the side.

The La Liga champions will make full use of Arthur’s transfer fee in buying Lautaro Martinez, who has been their primary target ahead of the upcoming transfer window alongside Neymar.

While Barcelona have asked Juventus to seal Arthur’s deal by June 30, Juve sporting director Fabio Paritici has reportedly denied this saying the player first needs to be convinced.