Barcelona president Joan Gaspart has rejected Lazio’s offer to swap their unsettled midfielder Gaizka Mendieta with Barcelona’s Brazilian striker Rivaldo.

Former Valencia skipper Mendieta, who has flopped since his £27million move to Italy, has been deemed surplus to requirements by Sergio Cragnotti, president of cash-strapped Lazio.

However, h is hopes of negotiating an exchange deal for Rivaldo have suffered a setback with the news that Barcelona are not interested in signing Mendieta.

“I am not interested in a swap deal”, the Catalan president stated, thus refuting reports over the weekend that the clubs were discussing a deal.

Gaspart also denied that full-back Carles Puyol was on the move. Real Madrid and Manchester United had both been linked with the international defender, but Gaspart claims the player is staying put.

“He still has two years on his current contract. It gives us time to negociate”, Gaspart said.