Barcelona will try to sign Mesut Ozil for £53m if they can’t sign Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho.

Barcelona apparently want another Arsenal player. That’s a good starting point if you’re looking to make up a transfer rumour. That’s what Don Balon have done, as they’ve concluded that should the Catalans not be able to sign Coutinho, they’ll look to sign Ozil instead.

They claim that Ernesto Valverde wants Coutinho as a long-term replacement for Andres Iniesta. Should they be unable to sign the Brazilian, they’ll try and get Ozil for £53m instead. Obviously you would sign a 28-year-old as a long-term replacement for somebody.

Moreover, the report claims that Coutinho and Ozil are backups for Marco Verratti, despite the three players being completely different types of midfielders. If you’re rolling your eyes at this latest rumour, you’re not the only one.

Ozil has 12 months left on his contract but has spoken about how happy he is at Arsenal. There’s hope that a new contract can be agreed during the season. Why Barca would need to pay £53m for his signature given he’ll be a free transfer next summer is another question.

Arsenal have also taken the stance that no first-team player with his contract expiring will be sold this summer. The same would obviously apply to Ozil. It’s unlikely this rumour will snowwball, especially given the new league season is less than two weeks away.