November 28, 2017 / 5:29 PM / a year ago

Former Barcelona chief Raul Sanllehi joins Arsenal

(Reuters) - Arsenal have appointed former Barcelona director of football Raul Sanllehi as head of football relations, the club announced on Tuesday.

Sanllehi will start in February after 14 years at Barcelona, working alongside manager Arsene Wenger in a further sign of restructuring at the Premier League side.

Sanllehi, who is credited with bringing Neymar to Barca, will take the lead role in future signings but, significantly, he has not been appointed director of football, a position Wenger has criticised in the past.

Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis said: “Raul has extensive contacts across the football world and has been directly involved in some of the biggest transfers in Europe in recent years. We look forward to him bringing that expertise to Arsenal.”

(This story has been refiled to fix dropped letters in ‘appointed’ in third paragraph)

Reporting by Neil Robinson; Editing by Christian Radnedge

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