Arsenal must pay £3.6m to sign Barcelona's 'next Messi'

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Arsenal will have to pay a fee of £3.6 million if they hope to sign Barcelona starlet Antonio Sanabria, reports suggest.

According to the Daily Mirror, the player dubbed the 'next Lionel Messi'  has a release clause in his current deal at the Camp Nou that exceeds the fee that the Gunners had initially hoped to spend to acquire his signature.

17-year-old Sanabria, who has already won three senior international caps for his native Paraguay, has been linked extensively with Arsenal in recent weeks as well as the likes of Serie A title hopefuls AS Roma after reportedly telling Barcelona that he wants to leave the club.

Just last week it was reported that Sanabria was set to sign a five-year-deal to move to North London, with it initially believed that the Premier League leaders would only have to pay around £300,000 in compensation.

However that price appears now to have risen quite substantially for a player who is, let's not forget, yet to make a single senior appearance for Barcelona's senior side despite several appearances for their 'B' team.

Such news is presumably likely to frustrate the famously frugal Arsene Wenger, particularly given how little money it initially appeared Arsenal would have to part with in order to get their man.

However, given the success of former Barcelona youth prospects - including the likes of Cesc Fabregas - at the Emirates Stadium, it still seems like a relatively small price that is worth playing in order to land such a highly-rated youngster.

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