Arsenal step up efforts to sign ‘the next Luis Suarez’ as preferred destination revealed
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Arsenal have received a major boost in their pursuit of Brazilian forward Vitor Roque, according to reports.
The Gunners are in pole position to lift the Premier League trophy after a fantastic season in north London.
However, Mikel Arteta already has half an eye on the summer transfer window, as he attempts to navigate a busy European schedule next season, with a Champions League finish all but guaranteed.
18-year-old forward Roque, who plays for Brazilian side Athletico Paranaense has been heavily linked with a move to the Emirates.
Roque names preferred destination
Roque has caught the attention of several European top clubs including Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, Chelsea and Manchester United.
The player previously disclosed his dream of playing for Barcelona, putting a serious dent in Arsenal's transfer hopes.
However, in a major U-turn, Portuguese transfer journalist Bruno Andrade has revealed Roque's desire to play in England, having been following the Premier League for some time
Meanwhile, Roque's representative Andre Cury reportedly has a 'bad relationship' with Barcelona which could make negotiations difficult.
The report explains that Cury was removed from his post as Barca's representative in South America, creating a bitter relationship.
In addition, Cury is said to have travelled to London to hold formal talks with Arsenal and Chelsea. While Roque's father was also spotted in the capital recently, sparking further speculation.
West Ham saw a bid in the region of £12 million rejected for the teenager in January.
Whilst Portuguese news outlet UOL claim clubs will need to splash over €50m (£45m) if they are to land him this summer, with his release clause said to be €100m (£88m).
In a recent interview with Spanish publication Sport, Roque drew comparisons between himself and former Liverpool striker Luis Suarez, who Arsenal attempted to sign with their infamous £40m and £1 bid in 2013.
“There is a great similarity," Roque said. "Both Luis Suarez and I use a lot of physicality in the way we play, and we also have points in common in finishing, being very keen on scoring goals."