Arsenal star Hector Bellerin has emerged as a transfer target for Barcelona and the Gunners are confident the right-back will be at the Emirates beyond the summer transfer window.

The 22-year-old signed a long-term contract at the club last season. Sky Sports report claims the defender is a key player in the squad and Arsenal are unwilling to sanction his sale, who has already committed his future by agreeing a new deal.

Barcelona appointed Ernesto Valverde as their new manager after Luis Enrique decided to step down from his post after the end of the 2016/17 season. The Catalan club's technical secretary Robert Fernandez had identified Bellerin as the perfect fit at Camp Nou.

The La Liga outfit's new boss believes the north London club's full-back has the potential to become one of the best players in his position in the future. Valverde, who has made signing Arsenal star as a priority, has identified Bellerin as the ideal right-back signing for Barcelona.

Bellerin left the Spanish outfit and joined Arsenal in 2011. After spending two years at the academy, Arsene Wenger promoted him to the first team in 2013. Since then, he has been the first choice right-back, until the Frenchman reverted to three players at the back.

The player himself revealed that he is "happy" with the recent reports linking him with a return to Barcelona. However, Bellerin did admit that any potential move away from the Premier League club will not solely depend on him.

Arsenal will resist any offers from Barcelona in letting Bellerin leave the club. Should they successfully manage to retain the right-back after the transfer window, Wenger's side will block Valverde in completing the ideal signing in his first summer at Barcelona.

Wenger will be aware how Arsenal lost Cesc Fabrgeas to Barcelona as the midfielder returned to boyhood club in 2011. The Gunners will be looking to avoid a similar situation as they continue their efforts to keep Bellerin at the Emirates.

Hector Bellerin
Hector Bellerin is strongly attracting interest from Barcelona Getty