Arsenal technical director Edu Gaspar has revealed that He talked with Raphina’s agent Deco about the situation of the former Leeds United attacker before he joined Barcelona.
According to Edu Gaspar, Deco revealed to him that the player wanted to play for Barcelona.
The Brazilian international was one of the sought-after players in the transfer market before he eventually joined Barcelona for £55 million. The likes of Chelsea, Bayern Munich, and Arsenal were all monitoring the situation of Raphinha.
Chelsea had agreed on a transfer fee with Leeds United but saw the deal hijacked by Barcelona.
What did Edu Gaspar say about his conversations with Deco?
In an exclusive interview with Sky Sports, when the Arsenal technical director was asked about how close Arsenal was to signing Raphinha he said: People think we went in too deep about Raphinha because Raphinha was everywhere.
“It’s fair we did have some conversations with Deco because Deco is his agent and I have a good relationship [with him] – we are friends.
“I just said to Deco, ‘Can you explain to me the situation with Raphinha?’ and he was clear, ‘Edu, we have a good relationship but I’m not going to lie to you, his idea is to go to Barcelona because he’s dreaming to go to Barcelona, and we’ve been talking to Barcelona since a long time ago.
“Okay, thank you very much, if something happens then just let me know because I can explore and understand the situation. If not, no problem and we carry on with our relationship.”
The former Brazilian international also revealed that He and Mikel Arteta always agree on a player before he signs them.
Edu said when asked about the importance of agreeing with Mikel Arteta before signing a player: “One hundred percent. I’m never ever going to sign a player which Mikel is not comfortable with, never. That’s not my style and for sure it’s not the Arsenal style.
“If we decide to work together then the decision needs to be together. It’s not Mikel’s signings, it’s not Edu’s signings, it’s the Arsenal signings so that for me is the most important thing for people to understand.
“I always say people sometimes give the credit to me or Mikel, but the credit has to go to Arsenal. We are Arsenal, we are working together and the decision we make is together.
“Around one decision is not only Edu and Mikel, it’s a lot of people around those decisions. The most important message to the fans and for people to understand is that we sign players for Arsenal and [they are] Arsenal’s decisions.”
The Arsenal technical director also expressed his excitement about the signing of Oleksandr Zinchenko from Manchester City.
Edu Gasper added: “We are so excited to have Zinchenko with us here because he’s a player that we targeted. It’s a player that we really believe has the characteristics and the qualities that are going to increase our level in the squad for sure.
“[The Zinchenko transfer] was planned like six months ago, to feed that position in the best way possible in the way which Mikel wants to play.
“Mikel of course knows him more than anyone because they worked together [at Manchester City] but all the information around the player is top. Not only about his qualities as a footballer but as a person as well, which for us is so important to have a player like him in the squad.”