Arsenal are considering making a surprise move for Barcelona midfielder Javier Mascherano with Cesc Fabregas going in the opposite direction, according to reports.
Mascherano moved to Barca at the start of the season but has found his first team opportunities hard to come by in the presence of Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Sergio Busquets.
Having forced through the move from Liverpool, Mascherano is now frustrated and wants to move elsewhere if he cannot break into the Barca team.
With the Catalan side desperate to bring Arsenal skipper Fabregas back to Camp Nou, the Gunners have sensed an opportunity to replace him with a proven alternative.
With Denilson also on his way out of Arsenal, manager Arsene Wenger wants to add some more bite to his midfield and the former Anfield ace would be perfect.
Pep Guardiola will be desperate to use Mascherano as leverage to sign Fabregas but Arsenal will be reluctant to let their captain leave the Emirates Stadium.
If Fabregas does not go the other way, Barca are likely to want to at least re-coup the money the paid Liverpool for the Argentina captain so would demand a price of around £22 million.