Barca 'Lose Out' To Arsenal In Race For Belgium Star

Youri Tielemans, Thibaut Courtois and Eden Hazard
Youri Tielemans, Thibaut Courtois and Eden Hazard

With Barcelona keen on finding a replacement for Sergio Busquets as soon as possible, reports suggest that the Blaugrana have lost out on their top target for the position to Premier League giants Arsenal.

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The expectation at the Camp Nou is that Busquets will call time on his career with the Catalan giants at the end of this season when his contract expires, and the LaLiga table-toppers are understood to be looking into the market for possible heirs to the Spaniard's 14-year throne.

As per Marca, Xavi Hernandez is a massive admirer of Belgium star Youri Tielemans and wants to bring him to Catalonia.

The 25-year-old is adept at playing in different positions throughout the midfield and also possess some technical attributes that Busquets lacks, such as shooting from long distance and arriving late into the box.

Bringing Tielemans to the Iberian Peninsula would prove a massive coup for Barca considering that they still find themselves in a relatively precarious financial situation, and the former Anderlecht man, like Busquets, has a contract at Leicester City that concludes at the end of the season.

The same report, however, suggests that it is unlikely the Sint-Pieters-Leeuw native will make the move to the home of the five-time European champions because he already has an agreement in place with Arsenal.

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The Gunners are long-time suitors of Tielemans and have reportedly reached a deal to sign the Belgium international. The north London outfit were said to be close to landing the box-to-box midfielder at the beginning of the season but decided to strengthen in other areas of the pitch instead.

Tielemans has reportedly been on Arsenal's radar since Arsene Wenger was still at the club's helm, and it seems Mikel Arteta may finally get the ex-AS Monaco man.

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