Arsenal’s hopes of landing David Villa have received a blow, with Barcelona stating that the player will not be allowed to leave the club.

The Gunners were thought to be in pole position to clinch a loan deal for the Spaniard, who had been linked with both Swansea and Liverpool in recent times.

With first-team opportunities limited at the Nou Camp, it had been suggested that the 31-year-old may be able to leave for regular football on a temporary basis.

These rumours were furthered by the fact he is still recovering from a leg injury suffered last season.

However, Barca coach Tito Vilanova has said that the front-man is going nowhere this January:

“David is not going to leave. We are very happy with him.” He is quoted by the Daily Mail.

Although he has struggled for game time of late, Villa did play during his side’s 5-0 Copa del Rey win over Cordoba last week.

He bagged two goals during the clash and Vilanova believes that he will be able to contribute to the first-team regularly once he is fully fit:

“The other day he scored two goals. We’ve always said that he’s coming off a long injury, and he’s getting more minutes all the time.

“We know how important he is, like last year when we missed him a lot in the second half of the season.

“I’m convinced he will help us a lot over the remainder of the season.”

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