Ousmane Dembele has been branded a ‘special player’ by Gunners transfer chief Sven Mislintat amid reports he could join Arsenal.
The London side have been linked with the player who has failed to nail his place in Barcelona’s starting eleven.
Dembele has struggled to impress many at the Camp Nou and recently had some callouts with club officials.
The 21-year-old is however a ‘really special’ player according to Mislintat who recruited the player while at Dortmund.
“I saw him, he had not even played for Stade Rennes in the first team,” Mislintat told Zeit.
“I bet he did not know which foot he used in certain situations because he just did not think about it, I felt this is a really special player.
“Shinji Kagawa was one of those. We were in Japan 10 times, but actually I was safe after the first 30 minutes of play. Nobody could grab it. With one move, he changed the entire direction of the game.”
Dembele forced his way out of Dortmund when Barcelona came calling after one season with the German club.
Refusing to train until he made the move to Spain but Mislintat do not hold any grudge against the player.
“The change was made by the signatures of the club officials, not by a strike,” he continued.
“As a club, we must channel the strengths and weaknesses of our players and stop complaining.
“Ousmane did not come to training – right. But this ability to develop strategies to exploit every gap was worth gold on the field.
“Ousmane decided to play games for us and was significantly responsible for the 2017 cup victory.
“Many of these top players who make the difference come from different environments, where they became hungry for promotion and success. They have a special intrinsic motivation.”