Arsene Wenger says there is no chance Barcelona striker David Villa joining Arsenal before the transfer deadline, ESPN understand.
Clubs have until Thursday to get any deals over the line and Wenger has waved the white flag in his chase for the 31-year-old Spain international.
The Gunners boss was interested in signing Villa, who is on the periphery at the Nou Camp, to bolster his frontline but revealed the Catalan club have no intention of letting the experienced forward leave.
“Barcelona do not want to sell David Villa, they have made that very, very clear,” he said.
“You respect the desire that if someone says a player is not for transfer, you expect the other clubs not to try and buy him.
“In January it is very difficult to find a player who can strengthen a team like ours.”
When quizzed on whether Barca would be open to negotiation Wenger was forthright in his response of “No,” and suggested that he is satisfied with his attacking options, reiterating his stance that he would only sign a player that would strengthen his current crop at the Emirates Stadium.
“What’s important is to buy players who can strengthen the squad,” He added. “Otherwise, you do nothing. We have enough quality strikers.”