Villarreal sensation Denis Suarez has admitted playing for Barcelona would be a dream come true, but stopped short of confirming his expected return to the Nou Camp this summer. The former Manchester City academy star refused to rule out a move to the Premier League, amid reports claiming both Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur are interested in his services.
Barcelona signed Suarez in the summer of 2013 from Manchester City's academy, before sending him out on loan to Sevilla in the 2014-15 campaign. However, on the back of a disappointing season at the Sanchez Pizuan the Catalans sold him to Villarreal in the summer of 2015 – maintaining an option to buy him back for just €3m (£2.3m, $3.3m) in case he developed into a star.
Suarez wasted little time proving to Barcelona that he was worthy of a Nou Camp return, and Luis Enrique admitted in a press conference in December that Barcelona were looking to accelerate the deal and return him to the club in the January transfer window. Villarreal blocked the deal, however, as the buy-back clause was not valid mid-season.
Barcelona technical director Robert Fernandez said in March that the Catalans would "probably" trigger the clause at the end of the current campaign.
However, reports in Spain in the interim have clouded matters.
Sport reported earlier this month that everything was ironed out and that Suarez had turned down offers from Arsenal, Tottenham and Napoli to move back to Barcelona.
Robert Fernandez, however, later denied any agreement, while Mundo Deportivo added the deal was in the balance as Suarez wanted to have assurances about his role in Luis Enrique's side before making a decision. The report confirmed that Arsenal, Tottenham and Napoli were all after him, adding that the player didn't close any doors until knowing the Barcelona manager's intentions. The Spanish publication earlier this week insisted that Suarez's agent will meet with Barcelona officials before any final decision is made.
Suarez, who is currently with the national team, has failed to clarify the situation – although suggesting that he will struggle to turn down a move to Barcelona.
"Playing at Barca is the dream of any footballer," the player said, as quoted by Sport. "They are the best team in the world. Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez are unstoppable, but players like Iniesta, Pique, Busquets and Mascherano are also very important for the team. It's nice to see them play."
However, Suarez also had praise for the Premier League following his experience at the Etihad Stadium.
"The English league is beautiful, I have very good memories and I learned a different lifestyle, a different culture. I grew as a person and a footballer despite struggling to adapt at first," he said.