By James Black

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has responded to claims Barcelona could join the Premier League if Catalonia declares independence from Spain – and believe Rangers and Celtic should be at the head of the queue.

Reports suggested European giants Barca could be invited to join the Premier League if they were to be kicked out of La Liga as Catalonia pushes ahead with it’s plans to breakaway from Spain.

Three of La Liga’s sides are based in the region – Barcelona, Espanyol and Girona – but Wenger believes Scottish giants Rangers and Celtic should be invited before the Catalans.

“I will try to learn Catalan and if Barcelona want to join the Premier League, it makes it even more difficult for everybody,” Wenger said, as quoted by the Daily Record website.

“But I don’t think it will go as far as that.

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“It’s an interesting situation to see how it will develops because it will have an impact on the sporting side as Barcelona is a highly political club.

“But we have enough clubs here, 20, if you want to go up to 24, but before we have to welcome the Scottish before we go to the Spanish.”

Both Old Firm sides have long dreamed of a move to the riches of English football as Scottish football continues to fall further behind their cross-border rivals.

Catalonians took the the polls on Sunday in a controversial referendum with over 90% of the 2.2million who voted voting in favour of creating a separate Catalan state.

La Liga president Javier Tebas has previously said Catalan sides would be banned from competing in Spain’s league system if independence happens before Catalan government minister Gerard Figueras claimed they could move to the Premier League.

It’s unlikely either scenario will happen despite a softening by UEFA & FIFA on the idea of cross-border competitions.

Scotland’s Challenge Cup is Britain’s only cross-border competition with teams from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland competing against each other.

In other Rangers news, Charlie Nicholas believes that Caixinha will be axed by the Gers.

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