Arthur Melo
Arthur Melo (left) helped Gremio win the 2017 Copa LibertadoresReuters

Gremio midfielder Arthur Melo has revealed how Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar was one of the key voices in convincing him to agree an option to sign for Barcelona.

The Catalan giants have first option to buy Arthur until July this year after they struck an agreement with Gremio earlier this month.

If Barcelona decide to complete the deal, Gremio stand to receive £26.6m ($37.4m) in transfer fees plus £8m in add-ons.

Arthur said he had spoken to Neymar, who spent four years at Barcelona before moving to PSG last year, to ask him about life in the Catalan capital.

"I'm happy because the negotiations have ended well for both Gremio and myself," the 21-year-old was quoted as saying by Marca.

"We're pleased with how everything went and now I have to talk to my club to see when I can join Barcelona.

"I asked Neymar about Barcelona and he only had good things to say, he recommended me to join the club."

Arthur also revealed that he sought the opinion of Philippe Coutinho, who joined Barcelona from Liverpool in January after a protracted transfer saga.

"I also spoke with Coutinho who told me that it was a wonderful city and an excellent club to play for," he added.

The young midfielder also spoke about what his transfer to Barcelona would mean for the future of veteran Andres Iniesta, who has been linked with a move away from the club.

"I have read that maybe he will go to China but I'd like to play with him and I don't know what his future holds," he said.

"A player like him makes football look easy. I don't want to go into comparisons but he has some characteristics and I have others."

Arthur helped Gremio win the Copa Libertadores last year and has represented Brazil at the Under-20 level.