Preparing to face Arsenal for the fifth time in his career, Sergio Busquets has named an Arsenal legend as one of his greatest influences.

The Barcelona midfielder is undoubtedly the greatest holding midfielder in the game, and arguably the greatest of all time in his position. A lanky figure, his composure and intelligence on the ball are matched by his technique.

Truly a dictator of every match he plays in, he has had the fortune to play alongside some of the best players ever and within some of the best teams that have played the game. However, way before all that, he looked up to an Arsenal captain.

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 16: Sergio Busquets of Barcelona looks dejected during the UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg match between Arsenal and Barcelona at the Emirates Stadium on February 16, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
Busquets and co. may have knocked Arsenal out of the Champions League in 2010 and 2011, but they failed to win at the Emirates Stadium, drawing 2-2 and losing 2-1. (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)

“I didn’t have a clear idol,” the midfielder told Sport. “But I looked at players with tactical similarities. I looked at Patrick Vieira, then Xavi and also Yaya Toure. I have to say that I learnt a lot from Yaya.”

Both Yaya Touré and Xavi played with Busquets, so Vieira is somewhat unique as a player the 27-year-old named as someone he admired but didn’t play alongside or learn from in training. The Gunners could do with someone with Busquets’ skillset right now, or his intelligence in the middle of the park, but unfortunately that won’t be happening.

Not only is the midfielder at Barcelona, but he is set to sign a new contract, which he confirmed in the same interview. No chance of a January transfer, then, and Arsenal fans will have to admire him from afar when Barcelona come to the Emirates Stadium at the end of February.