Arsenal star wanted to join Barcelona

Arsenal full-back and Spain international Hector Bellerin wanted to leave the club this summer amid interest from Barcelona, say reports.

BBC Sport journalist David Ornstein claims the Blaugrana’s public pursuit of the 22-year-old turned his head and he requested a move from the North London club.

However, the Gunners were unwilling to sell despite the right-back informing Arsene Wenger after the Under-21 European Championships – where he helped Spain reach the final – that he wished to move.

Barca had been seeking to sign a right-back as Aleix Vidal was the only player in last season’s squad to naturally fill the role, although midfielder Sergi Roberto appeared in the position most frequently.

The Catalan club eventually signed Benfica’s Nelson Semedo in a €35m after reportedly becoming frustrated in their pursuit of Bellerin, who has a long-term contract at the Emirates stadium.