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Arsenal trigger two-year contract extension for Barcelona-linked midfield prodigy

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Photo by DANIEL LEAL/AFP via Getty Images

Charlie Patino is one of many Arsenal youth graduates making their mark in the lower levels of English football. Currently on loan at Blackpool, the youngster has been making a solid impression in the Championship this season.

The central midfielder has racked up two goals and two assists in 17 league matches this term, becoming a crucial outlet in the Blackpool midfield. His performances have not gone unnoticed, with Barcelona among the clubs interested in his services.

The Catalans are alerted to Patino’s excellent performances in the Championship. The club are keeping close tabs on his progress and hope to make a move at the end of the season, when the player’s contract at Emirates expires.

However, according to a report from Fabrizio Romano, Arsenal have no intention of letting go of their prized asset just yet.

The Premier League giants, who are fighting for the league title this season, have triggered a two-year extension option in the teenager’s contract to keep him at the club until 2025.

On top of that, the Gunners also plan to sit down to begin negotiations over an improved, long-term deal for the 19-year-old midfielder.

They believe the youngster has the quality to become an asset in the Arsenal first-team, and in order to fend off interest from other clubs, they are prepared to hand him a new contract.

The report notes that Arsenal will kickstart negotiations with the player’s agents in the coming months. A potential contract extension will serve as a blow for Barcelona, along with his other suitors. The Blaugrana, after all, had hoped to sign the player at the end of the season on a free transfer.

Patino’s inclusion could have further strengthened the Barça midfield that already boasts the services of Pedri, Gavi and Frenkie de Jong, among others.

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