Gremio have ruled out selling highly rated midfielder Arthur Melo this year, seemingly dashing Barcelona’s hopes of securing him in the next European summer transfer window.
Barcelona and Gremio have been negotiating a deal for the 21-year-old since December, but the Brazilian club’s president Romildo Bolzan said discussions were currently on hold.
“Right now it’s not happening,” Bolzan was quoted as saying by Brazil’s Uol Esporte. “The [January transfer] window came and went without an agreement. But I can say that in any deal, he will stay with us until December. Everybody understands that.”
According to reports, Gremio have turned down a bid of 30 million euros from Barcelona and another offer from Monaco.
Arthur has attracted some of Europe’s top clubs after an outstanding 2017 season in which he helped Gremio win the Copa Libertadores, South America’s version of the UEFA Champions League.
In October, the Brazilian club extended his contract until 2021 and inserted a 50 million-euro buyout clause.
The former Goias youth-team player was rewarded for his impressive form by earning a call-up to Brazil’s national squad for their last 2018 World Cup qualifiers in October.