Barcelona have reportedly received a boost in their hope to sign Hector Bellerin after Joshua Kimmich expressed his frustration about his lack of playing time at Bayern Munich. However Mundo Deportivo suggest that Manchester City could now turn their attention to the former Pep Guardiola star while paving the way for the La Liga giants to sign the Arsenal right-back.
Bellerin, 21, was already heavily linked with a move to Barcelona during the last summer transfer window as Luis Enrique's side were looking to add an offensive full-back to fill the gap left by the summer departure of Dani Alves to Juventus.
The Spain Under-21 international decided to stay at the Emirates Stadium and committed his long-term future to Arsenal by signing a new deal in November.
However, earlier on February Mundo Deportivo reported that Barcelona were ready to renew their attempts to sign him in the coming summer transfer window after Sergi Roberto and Aleix Vidal have struggled to cope without Alves in the big games this season.
Yet, days later the Spanish publication added that the Catalans were going to face stiff competition from Manchester City as Pep Guardiola had also earmarked the Arsenal ace as a transfer priority – as Bacary Sagna and Pablo Zabaleta are already the wrong side of 30.
But Mundo Deportivo believes that the saga could take a new twist after Kimmich have put Manchester City on red alert by suggesting he could leave Bayern at the end of the season.
The 22-year-old versatile right-back was a key player for Guardiola during his time at the Bundesliga giants but he has seen his playing time restricted since the arrival of Carlo Ancelotti.
"It does not matter whether I understand it or not. The fact is I'm not satisfied with it and I want to change it," Kimmich said to the reporters on weekend after been an unused substitute in the win over Eintracht Frankfurt. "The coach knows I can play as a number six and at right-back, also in the centre of defence. From that he has many options to use me. "I know my weaknesses and work on them – especially when I'm not playing, I try to do more. In the Bundesliga we have a good lead now and maybe [the team] will be rotated."
Mundo Deportivo believes that Guardiola could now be tempted to reunite with his former player at City – and thus pave the way for Barcelona to sign Bellerin from Arsenal.
Yet, the Spanish publication also previously claimed that the future of Arsene Wenger at Arsenal will also play a major role in the Catalans chase for Bellerin - suggesting that the right-back Bellerin will feel freer to force his exit from the Premier League giants if his mentor leaves.
Speaking after the 5-1 defeat to Bayern Munich, Bellerin himself said that he wants the Wenger to stay at Arsenal beyond the end of the season after pointing out that the squad remain behind the boss.
"Of course. It's as simple as that, especially for me. He's the one who gave me my chance since day one," Bellerin said. "He's played a big part in making me the player that I am, and there are loads of players in the dressing room who will be in the same position as me. We all back him and of course we want him to stay."