• Premier League

Barcelona stand firm on Villa

ESPN staff
December 24, 2012
David Villa has been more active in training that games © Getty Images

Barcelona have insisted Arsenal target David Villa will not be sold in January.

The Spain international has struggled to secure regular playing time since his return from a serious leg injury and he has been linked with a January move.

Arsenal have been mentioned prominently in reports linking Villa with the Barcelona exit door, but the club are not looking to deal in January.

"In January we will keep Villa and it is important to remember that Barcelona is a club that habitually does not accept offers for star players in January," Barcelona director of football Andoni Zubizarreta told Canal Plus. "David is a player that brings goals and intensity to the team.

"Now he has recovered from a serious injury I believe that he is offering a good level on the field.

"It is normal that big players desire to play and this is perfect for the competition in the squad."

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