Marcus McGuane has become the latest to exit the Arsenal academy setup, with the player confirmed to be joining Barcelona.
Barcelona have confirmed through their official website and other social media platforms that they have managed to strike an agreement with Arsenal for the transfer of young Englishman Marcus McGuane. The Arsenal youngster will join the club’s Barcelona B side from the Arsenal youth setup.
Rangers were thought to be the front-runners for the youngster. But, it seems the Arsenal youth product has snubbed advances from the Scottish club in favour of pushing through a move to Barcelona. The player has already passed his medical and penned a deal with the La Liga giants.
Marcus McGuane has agreed a three-year contract at Barcelona, with the club having an extension options of two further years at their behest. The contract also includes a release clause of €25 million.
📝🔵🔴 BREAKING NEWS – Agreement with @Arsenal for the transfer of Marcus McGuane. 18-year-old midfielder joins Barça B on a three-year deal with an option to two more https://t.co/05kutjlHh8 #BarçaB #BeWelcome pic.twitter.com/YzxozgTvpF
— FC Barcelona B (@FCBarcelonaB) January 30, 2018
McGuane has been touted as one of the brightest up-and-coming midfielders coming through in England. That the player was included in The Guardian’s list of top 20 best young players in the Premier League in 2015 is a testament to the same.
The 18-year-old was on the radar of not just Barcelona or Rangers though, with the likes of Manchester United and Manchester City also linked with the player in the past few months.
McGuane was among a number of youngsters to be included in the senior setup at Arsenal this season. The midfielder reaped the benefits of Arsene Wenger’s choice to field a second-string side in the UEFA Europa League group stage, with the player managing 2 cameo appearances in the competition.
But, first-team chances did not arrive, apart from those precious 12 minutes of action, which saw McGuane restricted to playing Premier League 2 for the Arsenal Under-23s.
While Arsenal will be gutted to lose another young gem – the Gunners have already lost a few players from the youth setup from the summer up until now – Marcus McGuane will be delighted at having secured a move to Barcelona.
The player will become the latest addition to Gerard Lopez’s Barcelona B side, who are currently fighting for survival in Liga Segunda. Barcelona have recently signed Nahuel and a couple of other players to reinforce their squad and it will be interesting to see whether McGuane is thrust straight into the scheme of things or is slowly inculcated into the setup.
The move will enable McGuane to experience competitive soccer in the second division of Spain, while also having the ability to perhaps, carve out a place for himself in the first-team setup at Barcelona in the near future, if he manages to leave an impression on the coaches while plying his trade for Barcelona B.