Barcelona midfielder Arthur has told the club he does not want to play for them anymore as the midfielder refuses to return from Brazil, Goal has learned.

The Brazil international will join Juventus this summer after a deal worth €72 million (£66m/$81m) plus up to €10m in bonuses was agreed in June, but his contract with Barcelona will run until the Champions League campaign is over.

Coach Quique Setien gave his players a break after their second-place finish in La Liga and the 23-year-old took the opportunity to return to his homeland.

He was expected back to undergo tests for Covid-19 this week and begin preparations for the second leg of the last-16 tie against Napoli on August 8, but he has notified the club that he will not return.

Barca have warned Arthur that he will be violating his contract and will face fines for his conduct, but he is standing firm and refuses to represent Setien’s side again.

Arthur moved to Camp Nou from Gremio in a €40 million (£35m/$47m) deal in 2018. He has made 72 appearances in all competitions, with 28 of those in 2019-20.

His playing time this season was limited by injury until he was dropped altogether, with his last appearance being a four-minute cameo against Celta Vigo in late June. Continue reading

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