Arsenal are considering signing Barcelona forward Isaac Cuenca on loan till the end of the season, according to the Express. Spain's U23 international featured 33 times for the Catalan club during the 2011/12 season, scoring thrice and creating six goals before a knee injury ruled him out for eight months.
The 21-year-old has yet to feature for the La Liga leaders this season and with coach Tito Vilanova afforded the luxury of choosing from Lionel Messi, Pedro, David Villa, Alexis Sanchez and Cristian Tello in the forward positions, it is highly unlikely Cuenca will get regular playing time at the Camp Nou. The Spaniard is therefore likely to be amenable to leaving the club for the rest of the season, in search of game time.
Arsene Wenger is an admirer of the youngster's talent and an earlier report by the Metro also credited Premier League leaders Manchester United and Chelsea with an interest in the player. A report by talkSport indicates Liverpool were also interested in Cuenca and Brendan Rodgers could launch a bid to sign him this month, meaning Wenger will have to move quickly to beat both the Northern Irishman and the transfer window. The 63-year-old Frenchman has been quoted as saying he expects Arsenal to announce new signings this transfer window.
A report by Spanish newspaper Marca claims Barcelona would be willing to send Cuenca on loan, with the view to ensuring the youngster gets playing time and the chance to develop. However, the report also adds the Catalans will insist on a clause in any potential loan contract that guarantees a minimum amount of playing time for Cuenca.
Podolski: We Must Believe in Our Game
Meanwhile, Arsenal summer recruit Lukas Podolski claims his team mates should not be carried away despite the emphatic 5-1 league win over West Ham on Wednesday. The Gunners recorded a superb second half at the Emirates and the German international was in inspired form, scoring once and creating three goals.
The former Bayern Munich striker believes Arsenal are still capable of a top four finish and qualifying for the Champions League next season.
"We must believe in our game. We have great players in the team and after the games against Man City and Chelsea, the atmosphere was not so good. But we won 5-1 and we look to the next game in the FA Cup on Saturday. It was one game and we have three points, which is important, but we have 15 games more to play. It is not about saying 'Arsenal are back' because we need more of these games and more of these points. Then I think we back into the top four," Podolski explained.