Why I Don’t Want Cesc Fabregas

He’s a fantastic footballer. He’s a World Cup winner, captain of a top 10 side in the world, and he already knows the Barça ropes—culturally as well as sportingly—but I want no part of him. There are good arguments that he would add depth to the midfield and attack, a seriously good argument that if the team wants him (true) or needs him (debatable) then now is the time because he can spend Xavi’s waning years learning from the maestro, and a closeness between him and other members of the squad that wouldn’t break apart the dressing room. But I want no part of him.

My reasoning is fairly simple: he left. It was his right to do so, I firmly believe, and I hold nothing against him for that. I’m happy for him that he was able to find success at Arsenal and on the national team and if Torres is worth £50m or Andy Carroll worth £35m, then Cesc is certainly worth €35m.

But he left. He walked away from Barça and, again, that is his right to do so, but it is also our right to say “Okay, good luck, goodbye.” And if he wants to come back, he can come back, but not for a price. Not for more than the fee that was eventually paid for him (you could adjust for inflation if you really want). It was his choice to leave, to play with the Spanish and English laws and disappear for a night. And I cannot stress this enough: that is his right and I do not hold it against him as a person. I probably would have made a similar decision.

It’s just that Barça is a club that trains a lot of players and we cannot set the precedent of buying back those who leave the club when we can do nothing about it (and make no mistake, we could do nothing about it). It is not a question of them being “ours” because they can leave if they want; instead, it is a question of the club’s perspective on who to bring back. Gerard Pique cost €5m too much for me (or that minus whatever the fee we ended up receiving for him was). Yes, that was a great deal in the market and a total flub by Manchester United (unless you buy that Barça youth products can’t play outside of Barça, which I wouldn’t argue too strongly against), but we shouldn’t have done it.

It was also Fabregas’ decision to sign a contract extension rather than wait until his contract expired and choose his suitor. I realize that contract extensions and re-ups in Europe are different than in the United States where free agency rules a lot of the market, but it should have been made clear to him at the time that he wouldn’t be returning to Barça until 2015 if he signed that extension. Would he still have done it? I don’t know—the raise was probably pretty huge and hard to pass up. But that’s his decision.

And it’s not that I think Fabregas betrayed Barça, though perhaps there’s a smidge of that, it’s that others have not done so. Thiago has shown loyalty, Xavi showed loyalty and worked to break into the system rather than leaving for an easier assignment. And if that was the decision he felt he should make for his career, again, all the luck in the world to him. But not at Barça unless he comes back not costing us anything.

I believe in player’s rights above club concerns, but that does not mean that the club cannot decide to reject an eight figure transfer for a player that left of his own accord. And yes, I realize this limits our options on a couple of players, but I’m okay with that. If Gio Dos Santos (suddenly, unexpectedly, shockingly) turns into a world beater, then we can buy him back because we sold him. He didn’t leave us in the lurch. Of course, I’d completely understood if he turned down that offer, but that’s his decision, not mine.

Some more nuance: Yaya Toure left because of a variety of factors including playing time and wages. Manchester City were there offering not only a large raise, but also the ability to play with his brother, Kolo, and Barça cashed in on that desire to the tune of €24m, a nice €13m profit on the player, effectively saying that the team could do at least as well without him (though Mascherano was purchased soon after). It could be argued that Yaya held us over the coals and because we weren’t going to be held to ransom, he had to move. He would, then, in a sense, qualify for the Cesc Rule. Each situation is different and obviously we have little information about the precise goings on behind-the-scenes.

Because of these nuances, I understand if others have a different view. That’s okay, I get it. Perhaps the team would be better with Cesc than without and perhaps some believe in bringing back The Catalan Kid. It seems unlikely that it would be worse given the Spanish national team example of how the midfield could work. It just feels wrong, like the club is being snookered by an impatient child incapable of working through, like Xavi, Iniesta, Messi, even Bojan. Fight for your place rather than look up the ladder and say “I can’t make it here.” If you’re that good—if you’re worth €35m+—you’re good enough to earn a spot. And if you feel like you want to go elsewhere to earn money now, during what is a short shelf life, that is perfectly acceptable. But to me, that’s the same as shutting the door behind you as you go out.

Published
Categorized as Thoughts

By Isaiah

Isaiah is a co-founder and lead writer for Barcelona Football Blog. He currently lives in the greater Philadelphia area.

328 comments

  1. Spot on!

    Another thing that adds for me is the timing. He says he would want to come back even if we weren’t winning. I call BS. Now that Arsenal have gone trophyless for 6 or so years and we’re winning everything, he wants to come back. Where was this need, say, three years ago when we finished 3rd in the league and had to qualify for the CL? Yeah.

    I get it, his idol is coach and he’s BFFs with a lot of the players, but he chose to leave. Big bad Wenger didn’t come and whisk poor, innocent Cesc against his will; he talked it over with his mom and said, “okay, I don’t think I can compete with Xaviniesta, so I’m jumping ship”, which is okay. Football is a short career and you gotta make you dough quick considering you have a time limit. But it feels like a betrayal if we splash cash for someone jumped ship, who didn’t show any loyalty and who wants to come back when we’re in a historic era. It irritates me how little is being said about Fabregas and how much he has to play at this. He wants to play both sides; leave but still be a hero. It doesn’t work that way, especially when you’re the cornerstone of the team.

    Pique is different because he was the grandson of the director during the Nunez regime and with Laporta and a new board coming in, he kind of had to leave. Politics forced him out, which is something I actually didn’t know. And what makes me forgive Pique is that he was desperate to come back. He was ecstatic to be at the club even though we suffered the worst season in recent history. And more crucially, he cost 5m Euros.

    I don’t like the whole message this Fabrelust is sending to our youth. Thiago had come out to say recently that he didn’t like the talk of him being sold (i.e. the rumors he’d be a makeweight for Fabregas) and that made me so sad. So very sad. Because he wants to stay and triumph with Barca even though he could want into a Man Utd or other such club’s midfield.

    It’ll take a lot of time for me to warm up to Fabregas when he does eventually come. I don’t have anything against him as a person (he’s actually the reason I even watch Arsenal) and I think he’s a brilliant player, but I don’t like the baggage that comes with him.

    1. So, uh, to sum it up, I guess my problem is: timing, price and Thiago.

      I should also add that the money could be used to be spent elsewhere, like a CB.

    2. HA HA HA. Im an Arsenal fan. To me Xavi is a special player, to say you have Thiago is abit silly; Thiago is good but he is far from Xavi. Guadiolla wants cesc and the barca players want him so bad because they know cesc is a young xavi if not better. I know for a fact that Cesc wanted to go last year so his heart was not in it this season. Cesc has played at the heart of a battle hardend league where legs get broken for many years. Barca want him also because RMADRID, MANCITY, CHELSEA would pay 45mill plus for him and pay triple what Barca could pay.
      Pique, no offence was crap in manchester. Im sure Fergie regrets that decision to sell so cheap.
      My point is that he loves Barca. At 16 Arsenal gave him a chance to secure his whole family for the future. At Barca he was not so sure. He could of broken a leg or lost focus which happens to many hopfuls.
      I like cesc alot, but his heart is with Barca.
      Give us 35mill and Thiago or Villa and hes all yours. lol

    3. Hiya topgun,

      Arsenal is my second team. So I watch quite a bit of them. Sorry, Cesc is not a young Xavi, he’s a young Cesc. They are not that similar in either style or responsibility. If anything Cesc is more attacking. Maybe he’s a combination of Xavi and Iniesta, not possessing either one’s strengths to the degree that Xavi or Iniesta do, but enough of each to make an impressive package. Busquets, as unlikely as it seems, has more of Xavi’s skill set than Cesc does.

      I have said that part of me wants Cesc back just to avoid having to go through this every summer and January. I was just being flippant. Count me in the don’t want Cesc back until he’s free (or really cheap, no more than Pique cost). Same reasons as most: Thiago, his injury concerns (which may be less at Barca where he won’t be thrown back on the pitch half healed), message it sends to youth players, COST, but mostly not because he signed the first contract, but because of the extension he signed.

      We know that Thiago is not up to the level of Xavi yet. But we see his potential and we’d like to see it developed properly at Barca. At other teams he may be thrown into a starting role before he’s really ready. That can work out(Cesc) or be disasterous (Bojan).

    4. Pique wasn’t crap at utd. Ask any die-hard utd fan.
      I hadn’t even heard his name when he came to us. On of my friends, who is a huge utd fan, told me, don’t worry, he’ll be great for you. He recounted his couple of performances and said that he was almost as good as ferdinand.

  2. Plenty of reasons to pass on Cesc, mainly because with Thiago we don’t need him. I respect your opinion, but him leaving is not a reason in my opinion. People may think him leaving was crappy or disrespectful, but oh well, it is not near as bad as what we did/are doing to Kerrison. This is a business, and Cesc made a good move. He has been the most technically gifted MF in the most watched league in the world for 6 years or so, and a club captain on one of the 15 best clubs in Europe. He made the right decision to move, and I thank him for it because if he had stayed, we may not have seen Andres and Xavi together. If Cesc disrespected the club, by jumping ship, then we are no better for baiting along Kerrison. Also, if JDS lefy would you blame him? 15 months ago we were talking about him like we talk about Thiago now, he was next in line. Now he is burried, so if he was to leave, be brilliant for 5 years, and fans were clamoring for him back, would you pass?

  3. Oh, bullcrap. Sorry, Isaiah, but I am sick of the whole “he left so he should shut up and lie in the bed he made” argument. He was a 16-year-old boy at the time. A child. With no immediate prospects of breaking into the first team, and an offer of more money than he had ever seen and playing time with Arsenal’s first team. He made a choice. Maybe it was the wrong choice, maybe it was the right one. You can debate that all you like. But stop acting like he broke some holy covenant and should do penance for the rest of his life.

    Oh, and the “he signed a CONTRACT” thing? Let’s get real. We all know that a football contract isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on. Contracts are signed for many reasons, and only one of them is to ensure that a football player stays at a club for the prescribed time. Kun Aguero signed a new contract with AM just a few months ago and now he’s up for sale to the highest bidder (except RM). No one seems to be calling him a hypocrite, strangely enough.

    1. Spot on Blitzen! People need to understand that Cesc was a 16 year old boy when he left, a kid , who needed his a legal guardian to sign the contract for him. Who are we to say what he should or shouldn’t have done at the time? Premier League offers come with a lot of money for the player and jobs and social security for the whole family, so are we entitled to tell the Fabregas family or recently the Toral family what to do? And obviously we’ll not be trying to sign “any” player who has left us but this guy is special.

      If it were up to me he wouldn’t be my priority because we need more reinforcements in other position but if Pep wants him and ALL the players seem to want him than who am I to not support them?

    2. Kun Aguero signed a new contract with AM just a few months ago and now he’s up for sale to the highest bidder (except RM).

      Here lies the problem with Fabregas. You sign an extension generally for three reasons: 1) for long term stability, 2) the inevitable pay raise, and 3) so the club you’re extending for gets a handsome sum for you. The last one is generally something players do when they are grateful for the club and it’s why players of selling clubs sign those extensions.

      The thing with Fabregas is that there is no highest bidder. It’s just Barca and he knew that if he ever left Arsenal, it’d be for Barca. He has said it himself. But by signing that extension — even with the knowledge he’d be returning — he raised his own transfer price. Do I fault him for it? Well, I don’t really know. Hindsight is 20/20 after all. However, if we won’t pay it, well, it’s really is his fault.

      It’s a putada, as Xavi has so eloquently stated, but it’s a putada he has created. I don’t think he should wallow in misery nor do I feel he’s got his just desserts (okay, slight lie on the latter), but he was no child when he signed that contract.

    3. The last one is generally something players do when they are grateful for the club

      Yes, exactly. He has been with Arsenal for 8 years. He loves Arsenal. He wants them to get a decent price for him. What on earth is wrong with that?

    4. Nothing, if I was an Arsenal fan. I think it’s pretty sweet that he’d do that — but that’s the whole playing both sides thing. The problem is that we have to pay that sum, and it isn’t a measly, say, 3m either. It’s about 10-15x that amount, and we’re supposedly in major debt and desperately need to strengthen our defense.

      It’s all well and good that he wants Arsenal to get a good price, but he’s made it so that we’re the ONLY ones who will pay it. It just doesn’t work that way. If he doesn’t want to man up and ask for a transfer, stay. But he won’t because he wants to come.

      And I say that he has to take some of the blame for that.

    5. I don’t think you understand how insulting it would be to Arsenal and their fans if he put in a formal transfer request. No way is Cesc going to do that. Maybe our new friend NS Gooner can speak to that.

      As you (and Xavi) say, it’s a putada.

    6. Nah. I know he’d never, ever do it and frankly, I’d be very disappointed in him if he did. In fact, I wouldn’t want him to come. EVER. It’s like Xavi or *shudders* Messi handing one in. A huge slap in the face.

      I’m being extra mean to Cesc today because I just saw Thiago’s interview in English and it made me feel all emotional. I don’t want him to leave, ever.

      –Sincerely, the 3rd member of the BFB Thiago Fan Club, after second in the command jordi and the Grand Overlord Jnice.

  4. Uh. Hmmmm ….

    From the Twitters: Arsenal comienza a quitar todo lo relacionado con Cesc que hay en la tienda oficial

    Dang, if they’re pulling Fabregas stuff from the official shop, something is going on.

    1. And the transfer window opens in…three days.

      /bangs head on desk. (I see to be doing that a lot lately).

      Oy vey.

  5. My reason for not wanting the Fabregas is significantly more base than Isaiah: He costs too much.

    We’re going to pay probably around 40m for a guy who barely plays half the season for his club? Yes, we can figure that maybe our medicos are different than Arsenal’s. Guardiola has kept Messi healthy for 3 seasons now, when he used to suffer a major injury every year. So who knows?

    But big, fat ol’ penis-head that he is, RoSELL is right about Fabregas being worth less this season. And he isn’t just worth less to us. I reckon he’s also worth less to Arsenal. Wilshere has exploded onto the scene, and Nasri is ready for the next level. They’re also eyeing (and have the inside track) on another talented AM whose name escapes me. Each year that Fabregas stays, his fee drops another few million. So if they’re going to sell, now’s the time.

    I think he is talented. It’s difficult to argue with the assist statistics that he puts out, and he already knows the system, though he will probably require some remedial training, if he comes.

    My fundamental issue is price.

  6. Alexis Sanchez

    ‘I am still a young player, but I have the ambition to become the best player in the world. I need to be more clinical in front of the goal, but I am very eager to continue developing into a better player. My biggest secret is perhaps my humility.’

    I am starting to really like this kid, he is putting the pressure on Udinesse too…I love it

    1. @barcastuff reported that those quotes were from an old interview, rather than a more recent one which would indeed imply that he was putting pressure on Udinese.

      I do like that we’re sticking to our guns on the bid of 28 cash/9 variables/3m from two Gamper Trophy matches. It’s still too much, but shows that we aren’t interested in a bidding war.

  7. “But big, fat ol’ penis-head that he is, RoSELL”……OMFG I love Kevin and this blog, so classy…….. The Tribune is clearly an amazing institution having this guy, a true beakon of journalism. A pulitzer is in his near future for sure!!!!!!

  8. The lovely thing about the internet is that everyone can have a different opinion, no? I agree with Isaiah about not wanting Cesc, but that’s mostly due to the talent we already have, those currently tearing it up in the first team and those soon to be promoted (Thiago!). Well, that and the fact we need depth in other areas and I would much prefer the $$$ to be spent there.

  9. Victor Valdes:

    Everybody is talking about the potential signing of Cesc Fàbregas for Barça: “He is a great player with exquisite skills. He knows this place well and knows what the shirt means. He is perfectly compatible with Thiago because those two offer different things. If he does some, he’ll be a great signing”, said Valdés.

  10. Arsenal fan here (as the name no doubt suggests), and I both agree, and disagree with your post. First, I commend you on a well balanced, unbiased article- very rare these days among all teams blogs. I do agree with the trophy argument- clearly these are not the most celebratory times for the Gunners, while Barca are winning trophies for fun. It’s easy for any footballer to be tempted, but if we were winning the EPL he may not be as anxious. Surely he knows that he’s a legend in London, whereas he’d be (a very talented) squad player at Barca. I do disagree with the ‘he left’ argument. He was a kid, saw an opportunity to play with one of the greatest managers at developing talent, and he took it. You cannot prove whether it was the right thing to do, but he’s clearly grown by leaps and bounds at Arsenal.

    I also don’t think he is as injury prone as his record would suggest. This summer is his first full summer in ages, and I hope, whether he is with you or with us, that he gets a full year in again. He’s gotten more assists over the past five years in the top five leagues than anyone (stat from Optajoe I believe), and is just capable of tearing defenses apart.

    All that said, I agree that bringing him back is more political than anything. You don’t need him, and while he would add midfield depth, you can’t afford to do that based on your supposed debt problems. I think your defense is incredibly weak at the moment (as shown by Masch and Busquet playing centre back), and the fact you concede so infrequently is more a credit to your midfield than anything else. Bringing in more defensive cover would just make you all the more fearsome an opponent.

    Anyway, just my thoughts. I’ve tried to keep the Arsenal glasses in my pocket, but you’ll forgive me if I’m intensely loyal to Cesc. Wanting to leave or not, he’s given a lot to the club I love.

    NS

    1. And by ‘incredibly weak’, I am referring to quantity, rather than quality. Your starting four are all very talented.

    2. So true. What’s interesting is that people are just beginning to figure out that defense begins in the midfield/possession for us. Usually when we concede, it’s off a jailbreak or giveaway, which hardly any defense is prepared for.

      I think we all agree that he’s a hell of a player. As I said, I only object to the price. I know he’s priced fairly in this crazy transfer world, but still ….

    3. Agreed. However, I do think Fabregas at 40million pounds is still a good deal for barca if u look at the pattern in the market in the past few years.

    4. “And by ‘incredibly weak’, I am referring to quantity”

      I think our defense proved its immense depth this past season. I very much doubt our attack would be able to survive the injuries our defense did. Even with all the injuries, there still wasn’t any room for Milito. I think improving the attack should be Barca’s priority. If there is money left and Barca find it necessary, they can replace some defenders. Replace Maxwell with Jose Angel, replace Milito with Fontas. The quanity would be the same, but the depth would be even stronger, as the quality would be much higher. 7 players for 8 positions, perfect for me. The quanity only seems weak now because we are afraid of using either Maxwell or Milito, but that would change with Jose and Fontas/new defender.

    5. Great post, NS Gooner.

      I agree that the faulting him for leaving at 16 is a bit unfair (I admit to some sour grapes there), and now that I really really think about it, the only real problems I have with him are price, timing, and what that price tells talented players like Thiago.

      I do think he became a better player faster at Arsenal. And make no mistake, Cesc Fabregas is an incredible player. I’m sure Man Utd or Chelsea would pay a handsome sum for him.

      I dunno, I just think that his coming is not a good time and purely political. With all due respect, this is the one team where him coming won’t add an incredible amount.

      Spot on re: defense. We are really vulnerable there right and the money we would be forking out for him could be better used getting a CB and another LB.

    6. I agree he wouldn’t add a whole lot, as in the important games you’d be hard pressed to super-cede Iniesta or Xavi. What bugs me more than anything is Rosell’s argument over the price, as I find it rather insulting to the player. Regardless of last season (which was mostly poor due to injuries than bad form), we saw Torres for 50MM, Carroll for 35MM, Henderson for 20MM, Dzeko for 34MM, etc. I would say Cesc is better than all of them except possibly Torres (and only when he’s on form), so his value has increased by the radical amount of inflation that is prevalent in football these days, regardless of any ‘wear and tear’. I would defend that he is worth 50MM based on market forces, but I’m not an idiot. I work in finance, and while prices are never less than what the seller will willingly take, it is never more than what a buyer will willingly pay. As Cesc will never go anywhere else, a compromise of somewhere between 35 and 40 seems the most likely. If the bid came in I would take it, and wish him all the luck in the world. He’s always been a class act regarding Arsenal, and he’s done his service to the club. It’s just a shame he’d never win the EPL and become a true club legend.

  11. Im not into the whole, he left us he is a traitor thing. There are probably hundreds maybe thousands of kids being developed in our youth ranks and youth branches and only a handful of those kids will ever get a good chance to play for the first team, all those kids that never made it either went to another club or quit football, does that make them all traitors? Not really. Even if your the most talented player to touch the grounds of La Masia and you were destined to play for Barca, it does not guarantee you’ll end up playing for Barca Seniors, look at Victor Vazquez as an example.

    Fabregas was offered a guaranteed opportunity overseas and many really don’t turn down that oppurtunity unless you are completely sure you will play for Barca.

  12. Absolutely agree w/ Kxevin, NS Gooner and Blitzen.

    I don’t blame Cesc for leaving Barça. I think we as fans often expect our team’s players to consider the club before their careers, but that is totally unfair and unrealistic, especially when the player in question is just a kid. When a player does show exceptional loyalty to Barça at the cost of a career opportunity, that is beautiful and admirable, but it shouldn’t be seen as the norm. We shouldn’t expect players who have little chance of breaking into the first team to stay when they have a better opportunity elsewhere.

    Cesc is an amazing player but I want him to stay with Arsenal, at least for another year. We can’t afford him right now and we need depth in defense, not another attacking midfielder. And as everyone’s saying, if Cesc coming to Barça takes minutes away from Thiago or stalls his development I am 100% against his purchase.

    1. I agree with you. I don’t think he will stall Thiago’s development, except if Thiago isn’t good enough.

  13. I think you people care too much for, and give too much credit to Cesc. I was against the following deals for Henry, Eto’o for Ibra, and this eventual deal for Cesc as well.

    I thought the money for Henry was WAY too much especially without seeing him play after the injured season he had before we got him. The physical he received had to have been below par, or they simply took it easy on him. When he came, we all saw that he was so slow he looked like a 70 year old next to all the other players on the field.

    I couldn’t believe the non-sense Pep made with his “no plans” for Eto’o his first season. Without him we would never have been on our way to win 6 trophies. I would still like to hear from Pep as to why he felt he could not play with Samuel, while he thought that he could play with Ibra, who has always been slow on the field, and an obvious poor fit into the club.

    This next deal for Cesc will bad in several ways. #1 he is not worth the money that Arsenal is setting his value at. Rosell is a lot closer to his value with the $27M than Wenger is with $50M. Look at the seasons Cesc has had over the past 4 years. He has scored 3-15-3-7 goals respectively. While he is a good player, he is not a top player. He is excellent at transitioning the ball from the back third to the front third, and I really think that is how you need to look at him. Ashley Young just sold for $20M to ManU and that is where the bar should be set, no matter what Wenger says. Look back to when Essien went to Chelsea at the same age for $24M, this is where I think Cesc is worth, maybe up to $30M if you want to talk about the price of football going up, but if the economy went up and down, then so should the player’s values.

    Additionally, look at the respect the spanish national team gives him….there is a reason that Juan Mata, Santi Carzola, and David Silva get as much, if not more time than him on the field.

    Lastly, when it comes to making decisions, I think we can all agree that he doesn’t have much of a spine. He’s tried to play both sides of the fence for years stringing Barca along, just as much as Arsenal. It’s almost as if he’s taken french lessons from all those years with Henry. The guy is waffle and flips every time the wind shifts. I want to play for Arsenal…but it is my dream to play for Barca….over and over again we heard this. We don’t need a guy like this in locker room, we want someone who truly wants to play for the club, and is committed.

    I would like to see us get Aguero or Neymar if we are going to spend big money, but we also need to think about suring up our back line.

    Visca el Barca!!!

    1. I have to disagree to him not being a top player. The below stats are from Optajoe:
      466 – Over the last five PL seasons Cesc Fabregas has created a total of 466 goalscoring chances, more than any other player. Coveted.
      28.6 – Cesc Fabregas created a scoring chance from open play more regularly (every 28.6 mins) than any player in top 5 leagues. Coveted.

      Now I’m not saying he’s better than what you already have, but there are very few teams where he wouldn’t walk right into the midfield. Comparing Fabregas to Ashley Young is laughable- Young is not first choice for his country either, but England’s midfield is a far cry from Spain’s. He has no Champions League experience, was not the best player for Villa, let alone United, and had one year left on his contract. Fabregas has played over 300 matches for Arsenal at the top level, has won us games we had no business winning (as exhibited in a two goal, 28 minute cameo vs. Young’s Aston Villa), and has four years left on his contract. You say he waffles over the two clubs, but is it possible he loves both? Clearly his dream is to play at Barca, but can still want to play for Arsenal at the same time if he ends up staying another year or two. I thought his comments this year were that of a clear professional- despite wanting to move he left it to the club he’s been at for eight years. I find that incredibly refreshing given player loyalty seems to be a thing of the past (i.e. Modric, Nasri, etc.).

    2. I was using Ashley Young as a way to guage the market. I also used Michael Essien as comparison, but I guess you didn’t see that. Essien at 24 was also a player many a manager would want to mold their team around. While Cesc sets many people up around him to shoot for goal, he’s still not doing it well enough for his team to score enough goals to win Championships.

      Look at what the Real Madrid did the last three weeks of this season to feed the ball to Ronaldo so that he could get the scoring record in La Liga. With that being said, I don’t see anyone pushing Madrid’s midfielders as the must have players this year. Setting people up does not win championships, goals win championships.

      My point is there are always going to be players who have talent and we can purchase at a nice price, and that they can fit in our system. We don’t need to break the bank for Cesc. While I agree that Cesc would step into a starting role into almost every other team out there, I don’t think doing so guarantees that team to win any hardware. We don’t need Cesc to win, we’ve proven that.

      We have Thiago ready to go, and we even have his little brother coming up behind him, and he is supposed to be on his way to being better than Thiago. We need to stay true to Cruyff’s system, trust it and not freak out. Let Madrid keep spending, let’s pay down our debt. They are going to have so much pressure on them next year, even more than this year. Cooler heads will prevail and we will come out on top.

      I do think it’s possible for a player to love two clubs, but I think his actions with resigning the contracts twice, shows he’s in it more for himself and money. He keeps Barca looming in the wind and mentions how much he wants to play for them everytime he wants a raise.

      There was a recent article where Usmanov called out Kroenke and the Arsenal board for charging the Arsenal fans exhorbitant amounts for tickets, and stuffing the profits in their pockets instead of investing the team. Being that Kroenke now owns 60%+ of the club, I don’t see this behavior changing. With that said, I don’t see Nasri staying there and I pretty sure that Cesc is going to sick of the same old story there. It was his desicion to resign with Arsenal twice, so I don’t think we should do him any favors in helping him get out of bad situation, if Arsenal continues to stay Arsenal. In that event, if he wants out, then he should buy out his own contract like he could have a year ago before the World Cup.

      Anyway, We’ll see where this all goes, and I hope like Isaiah we don’t purchase him……for anything more than $30M. 🙂
      If we do buy him, it will certainly help in extending Xavi’s career as he won’t have to play as much.

    3. For me, it’s money. And yes, Henry had to regain fitness his first season, but his second season is impossible to argue with.

      The unfortunate reality of us is that we buy to continue winning, and fit into the best side in the world. That isn’t going to be cheap, and we aren’t going to be able to sell, once we’re finished, for anything close to what a player cost. We aren’t Udinese.

      Fabregas was inserted into the World Cup final to make a difference, and he did.

      As far as his decision making, yes he’s straddling the fence. I’ve called him on it before. I’d say the French slagging is over the line. Lots of players of all nationalities straddle the fence, not wanting to upset fans in case the deal doesn’t happen. Fabregas isn’t the first, and won’t be the last.

      It’s also worth noting blog posts that are linked to above, that chronicle the reality of the Fabregas quotes, and how they were misused.

      As far as Neymar, Guardiola was right about his character concerns. For me, he’s more expensive than Fabregas, for Robinho II. No thanks. Aguero? I’d rather spend that sum on Sanchez. At least we know he tracks back.

    4. Looking back, I’ve always remembered Henry’s 19 goals in his 2nd season to come mostly against low bottom table clubs, or after the club were already up 2 or 3 goals….just saying.

    5. low teams? Like scoring 2 against Madrid? crucial away goal at Lyon? Bayern Munich? Atletico Madrid at the Calderon? these are just a few goals that come to mind..not to mention his assists and dangerous runs vs a lot of teams!

    6. The main argument I have is that the transfer market is ridiculous at the moment, and for 27MM we would not get anyone close to Fabregas’ quality. Young for 20MM is a bit much I think, as he has one year left on his contract and wasn’t that great last year. I saw the Essien point as well, but how long ago was that? I almost feel you can’t use transfers from more than a year ago as a reference, given how stupid the market is. I also argue your point about goals being the end all of defining midfielders. Fabregas’ numbers are much better than Xavi’s when it comes to goals and assists, but no one is saying Fabregas is better than Xavi. Also, it doesn’t matter how many perfect passes you give to Bendtner, you’re not getting any assists 🙂

      Supposedly Cesc will take a pay cut, and will forgo the 15% of the transfer fee he is entitled to for the move to go through. I don’t want to see it, but those are hardly the actions of a greedy player? If he wanted money he’d sign for City and get 250K a week.

      Anyway, I’ll defend Fabregas to the hilt, as you will with your players. I agree that you don’t need him and shouldn’t break the bank for him, but I think that you should have to break the bank if you are going to get him.

      Thiago looks ready, but you could be a victim of your own success- I’ve read a lot that he is considering leaving, and the reason is simply that your midfield is just too good. If Fabregas does sign, you may as well send Thiago the other way, as I doubt he’d stay. I’m sure you all are more informed than I am, but how would you feel if you were just breaking through into the first team, and the organization bumped you down the queue by bringing some one else in? If we get Mata (I doubt we will), Arsenal won’t look like such a terrible place for a young Spaniard.

      On a non Barca side note- I hope Nasri stays if Fabregas leaves. We’re linked with every available wide player, but we need some creativity in the centre of the park.

    7. “I’m sure you all are more informed than I am, but how would you feel if you were just breaking through into the first team, and the organization bumped you down the queue by bringing some one else in?”

      which is one of the huge reasons why i don’t want cesc to come to barca.

      If kari is #3 Thiago fan, I hope that I’m in line to be #4.

      I don’t really care what cesc did when he was sixteen, but if we are going to spend 35-40mil on a player it better be one that we NEEEEEED not one that we WAAAANT. i had to teach my four year old niece the concept of need vs. want the other day… but it seems like a fine line that many in the barca management haven’t figured out yet…

  14. For me, Cesc leaving at 16 is completely secondary. He was young. He left to get a chance to play. So be it.

    However, what I do have a major issue with was his contract extensions.

    And I have a particular issue with it because it’s the very specific nature of that contract that is going to cost Barca millions and millions of euros in fees that are completely unnecessary.

    Here’s the thing on the extension – Fabregas did not sign the standard kind of extension contract. Rather than sign a 5 year deal which would have ended when he was 25 he signed an eight year very long term deal.

    Why did he sign an eight year deal when he had to know he was probably going to want to come back to Barca especially when Xavi was 31-32? The reason was purely money. He wanted to know that he was guaranteed eight years of income.

    And not only did he sign one extension – he went back to Arsenal and had them redo the contract he signed in 2006 in 2008. The Arsenal board went as far as making his new contract and wage packet retroactive. They gave him a 3M pound lump sum payment agreeing that he had been “underpaid” the two years prior.

    So Fabregas not only committed himself to Arsenal for 8 years once – he confirmed it twice.

    But that entire deal and his salary moving forward had a real cost – Wenger signed him for the entire prime of his career. You could see the writing on the wall for what Wenger wanted to do. I’ll keep Cesc until he’s 27 and then sell him for millions back to Barca with a year to 1.5 years left on his deal.

    And Fabergas went along with it because it was in his financial best interest.

    He easily could have signed a 4 year deal when he was did his extension. Instead he signed an 8 year deal because it made him more money.

    And he had to know that by signing for 8 years he was going to potentially cause the club he professes to love tens and tens of millions.

    This was not the case of a player needing to sign to ensure his club gets something when he leaves like Kun did this winter for Atleti.

    Fabergas was already an absolute star young player when he left. Arsenal paid next to nothing for him. They are a huge team – not one struggling to make money or a team that paid a huge transfer fee for him.

    He did not sign an eight year deal to give Arsenal something back. He signed it so that he could get more guaranteed money in case he got inured.

    And the thing with Fabregas is that he seems to want everyone else to fix what he has come to see as a mistake.

    He signed away the entire prime of his career and like that wants everything reversed.

    Arsenal has been treated shabbily here. But it’s not by Barca for the most part. It’s been by Fabregas. It’s him.

    1. I should just stop typing my nonsense, wait for Euler to post so I can simply type:

      ^THIS!

      I can’t express just how much I agree with it. You just hit the bulls-eye of what my problem with Fabregas is.This is exactly what I think but have been too jumbled to properly and concisely say.

      I didn’t even really think about the prime angle, but yeah. He did essential sign way his prime and then wants everyone else to fix it. And yeah, by saying that he signed it so Arsenal get a sum…well, that’s admitting Arsenal are a selling club like Atleti/Valencia/Sevilla, right?

    2. By the time Cesc signed that extension’s Wenger’s management strategy was very clear. Keep players utnil they are in their late 20’s and then sell.

      There is no way Cesc did not know this. His agent is the son of the David Dein – who was Arsenal’s vice chairman for years.

      He had to know that Wenger basically wanted to get the best years out of every player and then sell before they went into decline. He did that over and over.

      But Cesc still decided to sign for 8 years. And that’s because Arsenal probably said if you sign for 8 years we’ll pay you more and he was getting guaranteed money for nearly a decade.

    3. I can’t rip on Fabregas for being a moneygrubber. He established that when he left at age 16 for money, stardom and a big club. No reason to think he’d change.

      I think that he also signed the contract not realizing what was going to happen to Arsenal and us (no disrespect intended to Gunner fans). I think had he known it would be 6 trophyless seasons, he might not have signed. Because after a point, it isn’t all about money.

      Like Henry and Villa, dude wants to win. Self-serving? Sure. Money-grubbing? You betcha. I’ve already labeled him Oft-Crocked Glory Hunter.

      But it’s hard to slag him for looking out for No. 1. I just don’t think the club should buy at 39m. No way, no how.

    4. ^THIS

      And what about the timing of his contract extensions!? The first time he signed an extension was when Arsenal were CL finalists. He had faith in them, that they would win things, so he signed.

      The second time he did was at the end of 2007-08 season. Arsenal came really close to winning the league that year. The faith’s still there. Moreover the money being offered is insane, so he signed.

      The timing I’m talking about is this… He signed the extension when Pep Guardiola returned as manager of Barcelona. By that time he still had 4 years left in his contract, but still decided to sign an extension taking the contract to 2015. But what about his dream!? What about playing under his idol!? Did he not know he is making it impossible for himself to return to Barcelona and realize his dream!? To be associated with Pep Guardiola to boot!?
      Or did he just realize there was no future for Barcelona(Remind you that was the dark period) whil his own club is looking bright, so just decided to sign the extension!? Now ever since the club started shining he remembers how he always dreamed to play for us and how playing under Guardiola, his idol, will be moments to cherish!!

      Arsenal has been treated shabbily here. But it’s not by Barca for the most part. It’s been by Fabregas. It’s him.

      People keep saying he is good at heart, that’s why not submitting the transfer request. But never did he respect Arsenal nor their supporters… Yeah Nasri & Modric say they want to leave. But what worse positions did they get their clubs into than that Fabregas did to Arsenal!? Modric would probably fetch morem oney for Tottenham than Fabregas would do to Arsenal! Moreover Tottenham aren’t title contenders unlike Arsenal and guess who’d be missed more by their respective teams!!

  15. Some @PedrithoFCB guy on Twitter is saying that a deal is done for 39m (fixed and variables), to be announced soon and for now, both clubs keeping it super secret.

    The BBC story about it kinda twigged me. The past few seasons, it’s been speculative bollocks between the Spanish sports dailies and the fiction-based BritPress. Now the grownups are wading in.

    1. Sport is reporting now that a deal is close and will be done this week.

      They cite a figure of 35M + 4 variables. I wonder if this is the original source?

      Regardless – I don’t think the Arsenal leadership is going to be leaking stories about willingness to sell unless they knew it was going to happen.

      They are preparing the arsenal supporter base for the probability of a sale.

  16. Well I agree with you, but securing your financial future seems to be the prevelant train of thought on every twentysomethings mind, regardless if they play football or not. Of course Cesc is wanting to come home now, we are amazing, something he colud not have known in 2008

    1. He wouldn’t have secured his financial future with a 5 year deal? Really? He’s just doing what every other twenty something person is doing?

      Compare what Fabregas did to what Alexis Sanchez is doing now. That deal is far from done, but Sanchez is turning down millions and millions simply to try to come to Barca. Sanchez hasn’t even gotten his first big deal yet.

      And Cesc could not have known in 2008 that Barca might be great?

      Ok. So that means he really is completely trying to have everything tailored to his needs. I want to go back “home” but only if you can absolutely guarantee me trophies. Playing in the Euro 2008 with Xavi and Iniesta and Puyol wasn’t enough. He needs more of a guarantee. He’s then basically saying I won’t work with you to achieve greatness. I will only come if you can guarantee me greatness? That’s not saying much. But it is basically what he’s telling Arsenal.

      And interestingly Cesc signed his extension back in 2006 – the year Barca beat Arsenal in the CL finals.

      I guess the potential chance to play with Ronnie, Eto’o, Messi, Xavi and Iniesta just didn’t meet Cesc’s high standards for guaranteed winning?

      Fabergas is in many ways the quintessential modern athlete. He wants everything catered to his needs. He wants to make decisions that maximize enormous wealth without having to live with any of the incumbent trade offs involved with procuring that wealth. In fact he expects other parties to incur enormous financial stress so that he can have it both ways. It’s really quite amazing.

  17. – too expensive
    – unnecessary
    – injury prone
    – waste of precious resources we should be using to strengthen other areas of the squad
    – kills minutes for Thiago (and others who’ve stayed to fight for minutes)
    – history of being greedy and fickle
    – has been jerking us and his own club around for years
    – Rosell is a douche

    did i about cover all the objections to this? is anyone here hugely in favour of this transfer?

  18. this really does feel like endgame for this too long for this particular annual fracas : (

  19. I feel we need Cesc more than we need Sanchez. Cesc is the best immediate cover in the world for the frankly irreplaceable Xavi. We are ok up front & Sanchez would just take minutes away from Affelay & Thiago, plus Iniesta can play as part of the trident. Finally, signing Cesc DOES improve our defence – as we defend with possession not position. Plus we have Fontas, Bartra & Montoya as ample cover.

    I’d rather sign Rossi than Sanchez, & I’d rather sign Cesc than anybody.

  20. Cesc is a masterclass. Barca would be luckey to have him for less than 50 Million. Forget the history, what is past is past. He is captain of Arsenal. I believe that is his price. But, because of his past, he may be able to come to Barca for approximately 40 Mil.

    There seems to be an alternative in Thiago. In the games that I have watched Thiago play for the Barca first team, he has tactical discipline issues, and looses balls in dangerous areas. When he plays higher up the pitch for Barca, he tends to run into defenders and looses the ball that way. He does not have the same tenacity as Cesc to keep the ball circulating and/or the ability to find a pass.

    I am a fan of Cesc, and I can see success at Barca for many years to come if he joins Barca. I do not get the same feeling based on Thiago. Yes Thiago can take on defenders, and has a good shot, and a good header, all the qualities of a good player, but he is nowhere near the level of Cesc.

    Xavi Iniesta Busquets are the midfield engine that make Barca what it is, the nucleas in the middle that circulate ball. There is no replacement for them right now. I would go so far as to say that because of Xavi’s tendonitis problems, Keita aging problem, Barca need a world class midfielder. Barca may not need Cesc this year. They might be able to survive this year with Xavi and Keita(time will tell), but definitely next year they will need them. I don’t think Xavi can play all the games, in all the competitions, and play for the national team.

    I see two alternate midfielders to Cesc – Schweinsteiger, Sneijder. There might be others, but from my recent memory, these are the players who have the tactical discipline to play in a crowded midfield, and still be creative.

  21. If he return, and it seems more likely than ever, please, please let us not meet Arsenal (if they qulify) or any other english team again in the CL, the drivel and hatred you get as an cule even on the comment section of a respected paper like the Guardian is already unblievable now. You have to fight a lonely war there against a condrum of drivel, downright lies, false accusations and the same old prejudices: we are brocken, c***ts, holier than you, there are endless snears about our club motto from people knowing and not wanting to know anything about our club,

  22. someone please tell me the reports from Soccernet and BS.com about Barcelona being one of the 5 clubs who have agreed to pay 45m for Neymar is garbage.

  23. I have to ask since I wasn’t following Barca back then – was there a really big fuss when Fabregas left? Or was it just a young, but talented player leaving which has turned into this nightmare just now because he has turned out to be that good?

    I think it’s kinda harsh to accuse Fabregas of a betrayal of sorts because he left the club at the age of 16. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, and it is easy to be annoyed by him now that he has proved his abilities as a player; back then, I believe, the situation for everyone must not have been so clear and obvious. I think people need to imagine themselves in his position when he was 16, the place in the first team was probably not guaranteed by any means, and when a club like Arsenal offers you a chance like that…

    I mean – look at Pique. If he had been tremendously successful at Manchester United, we would probably have had the same kind of mess there is right now with Cesc. But, since he was not that influential and important there, Barca was able to get him back rather simply and without massive amount of debate. Now people rarely mention the fact that Pique also had left the club when he was young – a bit of a double standard? (Although I realize that both of these cases are not identical)

    The biggest problem for me is the price – do Barca really need him that desperately to pay so much for him? I doubt.

    1. Laporta, the then newly elected president, met him in person to talk him off the move to Arsenal. Rosell, current president & the thenveryimportant board member under Laporta, did his all too. It’s not like the Arsenal fans love to picture it as if he was ill-treated here or was not considered important.

      People keep repeating he left in search of first team football. But Cesc was not part of the Arsenal first team in his first year. He had a world class mid field ahead of him at Arsenal too. After an year or so, because of different ales he got his chance. So it got to be either the money or Arsenal being the big shots then or the combination of both!

      DO NOT BRING PIQUE INTO THIS TOPIC, PERIOD… Pique leaving here is under total different circumstances. It’s a political issue. He was even bad mouthed publicly by some of the board members.
      And when and how did he return BTW!? When his club was riding high, being hailed as the best in the world and won the CL. While we were in our darkest periods. That is totally unlike Cesc who only wants to come here when we started winning left & right.
      Pique had as many defenders ahead of him there as he did here in his first season, so not even the lack of playing time is the answer to why he returned. He has Barcelona in his blood and that’s why he returned

    2. – Cesc was more or less the Thiago of Barcelona when he left. The club made an offitial complain (even though we were in big managerial chaos back then) and managed to get some coins compensation. For the rest, check my comment down. He wasnt a 16 years old kid when he renewed his contract. Just saying.

      – Pique is a different story by the way. His departure was a part of a conflict between the board and his grand father -former Barca director- Amador Bernabeu.

      – Each and every youth at Barcelona was/is/will be in Cesc’s position at 16 years old. Some leave -good luck anywhere else- some decide to stay and fight for a chance in the first team and those have the priority for me. That’s Why promoting Dos Santos is a better option for me than signing Cesc for free. And I mean it.

  24. “He was a kid when he left”

    He was a man when he renewed his contract. So that logic is paper thin. Beside the fact that for his age, football players with agents and media around them are not kids anymore.

    I agree with Isaiah’s post. I will republish a post I made two years ago in the same direction. Buying Cesc sends a wrong message to current youth, dont go Iniesta’s way go cesc easy way. Find yourself a club where you can earn more and play more and later Barcelona will buy you back for a Camp-Nou size price.

    Do we want to offer an Iniesta model for the youth to follow or a Cesc? Thats the big question.

    Its Iniesta for me – all the way. A more talented player compared to Cesc who could have left to any club (Real Madrid was just one of many hunters), but he didnt. He had the patience of the world even when he was a better choice to start at the last days of Deco, he didnt complain when he was unfairly benched for at least half a season acting as a super sub. He just kept on learning from quality surrounding him including Xavi, Deco and Ronaldinho and kept getting better till he got all things right for him and for the club. THAT is the player I want Sergi Roberto and co to look at.

    Is Cesc a good player? Yes. But he is not exceptional by any mean. You can find players who are more or less of the same quality for better price. Add to that, considering the squad needs, spending that amount of money in the midfield is the stupidest decision ever. With that amount of money invested on Llorente or Thiago Silva provide more upgrading to the team than what Cesc can offer.

    Needless to say there are lot of question marks concerning his injuries record and his performance curve in the last two years. I can go forever in listing reasons why he is not a good buy.

    But at the end of the day, he is Catalan -or else Barcelona wouldnt have even considered him. So we have to live with that I guess, convincing ourselves that buying him is a good move. I hope he perform good enough to make us all delusional enough to feel good about having him.

    1. ^ THIS

      But at the end of the day, he is Catalan -or else Barcelona wouldnt have even considered him. So we have to live with that I guess, convincing ourselves that buying him is a good move. I hope he perform good enough to make us all delusional enough to feel good about having him.

      Exactly.

      And if the move indeed happens and as a result we lose Thiago, then I’ll definitely lose a bit of respect for Pep. Not only is he sending wrong message to the kids but also is going against the main motto… bring the Cantera kids through instead of buying superstars. Especially since we don’t actually need one in the mid field right now

  25. It looks like it is happening. Apparently the Official Stores are removing his merchandise. He is not to be seen in the new promotional video when there’s even Nasri present in it!!

  26. So I’ve been thinking about Pep’s intentions in the transfer market this season, and I reckon Pep does hold the center of defensive issue very seriously, and I think more then people here say he does. I think this is the main reason why we are not breaking the budget to sign Sanchez. Because Sanchez will not solve any defensive issues in our squad. On the other hand previously I said to solve the defensive problem Pep has only two choices, either buy a CB or a CM and keep Masch and Abidal as secondary CB options. I think if we were to break our budget it would be for a midfield player, because it would guarantee us that we wouldn’t have to search for another expensive and risky defensive player.

    Eventhough there have been many points why Sanchez would be a dream choice for Pep to sign, but these points are still merely theoretical. Buying Sanchez for 35+ mil is still a hefty risk, and in terms of providing depth, Fabregas would offer just as much in midfield than Sanchez in attack.

    We do still have issues in midfield we need to solve, for example holding a lead against very good opponents. An example would be the 1st leg against Arsenal in the CL, after gaining the lead, we had no options off the bench to help maintain possession. Pep subbed on Keita to solidify the midfield, but that wasn’t enough we still failed to keep our passing game and we lost the game eventually. Also the cup final against Madrid, our midfield was spent leading up to that game, with madrid’s persistent pressure in the center of the field caused a lot of errors from our midfielders who couldn’t maintain our game for the whole game let alone in extra time.

    So I think there are many good points why we shouldn’t sign Cesc for so much money. But I think the points regarding Sanchez being worth the extra cash are rather weak.

  27. Wow wow wow wow….Acoording to soccernet, Santos rep said 5 teams have agreed to meet Neymars 45M buyout…….one of those teams BARCA baby….I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!! let the fun begin….Its Chelski, EE, United, Barca and City!!!!!!!!It’s surly down to us and E.E. Forget this kids attitude, it can be adjusted once he comes on to our matuer team!!!!!! Give me Neymar at 18 over Sanchez any day for the same price. Can dominate the LW for the next 10 years. THIS IS BORDERLINE EROTIC FOR ME.

    Neymar————–Villa
    ———–Messi

    w/Pedro back at super sub. Also Neymar and Villa can be impact subs when P!! starts. I really think it’s going to be Cesc and Neymar this summer!!!!!!!! Fu**in STOKED!!!!!!!

    1. I can see him going all Ibra on us. After his first training session. We can’t handle his ‘do forget about the whole package..

  28. Neymar at barca??excuse me, I WILL LIKE TO SEE A WHITE GIRL BLEACHING FIRST,OR MAYBE A LAME MAN DOING A MOONWALK…NO!!

    1. What does happen when a White girl bleaches?..I’d very much like to know that

  29. Sorry I dont quite understand your joke, cultural difference I’m sure. But I knoow I’m in the minority, but I love this kid, and for 5M more than Sanchez, he is a no brainer for me. Plus, he will retain his value, being so young. At 24, if he is just Pedro/Villa good, we can sell him for the same price, if not more!!!!! I heart Neymar. Give me Neymar and Cesc this season and a CB and a Coentaro like FB next year and we are talking Bulls esque dynasty here in Barcelona.

    Most beautiful places in Barcelona

    5. Beach
    4. La Rambla
    3. Musseu Picasso
    2. Sangrada Famila
    1. Camp Nou!!!!!!!!!

  30. When it comes to club finances, I think that the board must have a seperat transfer kitty for Cesc, like he does not even count against the 45M number. I am sure we will get a big time front line player this summer, and 70% sure we will get cesc. We are looking at 75M Euros this summer, and we may bring in hopefully 30-40M, Bojan(10), JDS(5), Milito(4-6), Maxwell(5-7),Jefferen(7-9) Ibra(6).

    Also, does anyone here think that Akeksander Kolarov has been burried at Man City, after they paid 16M pounds for him. I mean I think if he is less than scucessful again this season, we could probably secure his services for 10-12M euros. It seems like a good piece of business, his performances this last season dont show his true potential, and at 25, he is the perfect age. And I still think we could convert Santon to LB. The point is, we need a LB for the future next year, and if we want to spend 25M on an amazing CG, we need to find a bargin at wingback.

    So some LB we could look at next year

    Kolarov- skilled, burried @ City.. Likely attainable for just over 10M

    Santon(RB)- Started hot, cooled, playes both sides…curious to what he would cost.

    Emanuelson- Ajax product, immense attacker, perfect….I love this kid, he is a big time attacking FB, who was trained in the Ajax system. Can play left mid, and onlt cost AC milan 2,5M euros. 25 years old, and probably can be had for cheap.

    1. If we wanted Urby we would’ve paid for him in January. Or got him on a free come July.

      I think we should spend 45k on Kolarov.

  31. It is a well known and extensively written about fact that Barca doesn’t need Fabregas. not just yet. Barca’s midfield is our strongest position and we certainly don’t need a super expensive bench warmer given our debt problems. I have always believed, for all of barcelona’s sporting brilliance we are pretty foolish in doing business. There is just too much emotion. i just dont understand how with all our recent successes, we don’t have the pulling power we should have. We dont sell very well too. A barcelona player should be worth a lot, but instead we sell for peanuts or for free. i don’t get it. now we are licking cesc’s balls. We are a huge club and we are chasing a man who left the team. I am positive the only reason this is happening is because Cesc is a famous Catalan. nothing else. Good midfielder? sure, but there are loads of other midfielders with similar characteristics who will be cheaper too. The only reason this shit is happening is because Cesc is Catalan and famous!
    Now you guys can come up with hundred million reasons to justify why he shouldn’t be bought. but the bottom line still remains – he is Catalan. And fc barcelona is a sentimental fool. albeit a talented one.
    Visca Barca!

  32. In 2008 when Barca was in a crisis we did not need Cesc and therefore Pep did not ask for him so I don’t understand why many people say he did not come when we were in crisis. Now with Xavi heading to 32 having to play with pain in many matches Pep has asked for him and it is now that Cesc says he wants to come.
    Lets not compare Xavi and Iniesta to Cesc. Xavi and Iniesta are UNIQUE they are fairytale material the stories from Camp Nou will be about them not Cesc.

  33. Like I said before, If we buy Sanchez, we have to go out and buy another defensive player. If we buy Cesc or a midfielder, Masch and Abidal are enough cover for Puyol, and we won’t lose out in midfield if Masch has to play in defense.

  34. HELP NEEDED

    I’m not much into this transfer season.So,quickly,like all Barca fans,I would want Cesc Fabregas at Barca only when the time and the fee is right.

    Coming to my main reason of giving a comment is that does anyone have the La Manita and the CL final games for which the download is free of cost?. Even a website will which has the full match.The video should be clear,preferably in HD.

    No need to do it for free.I’ll send a post full of smilies. 🙂

    1. /http://www.footballtorrent.com/2010/12/barcelona-vs-real-madrid-29112010-la.html

      /http://www.footballtorrent.com/2011/05/manchester-united-vs-barcelona-28052011.html

      Here ya go..

    2. 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 😀 😀 😀 😀

      Thank You and I lived up my promise!!!!

    3. /http://www.cse.iitb.ac.in/~agni/ucl.txt

      /http://www.cse.iitb.ac.in/~agni/manita.txt

    4. I asked you what size you want in the last post.
      ANd which filehosting site?
      Hotfile, RapidShare, Fileserve?

  35. Here is your laugh for the day:

    As a possible alternative for Sanchez, Barcelona are interested in Man United winger Nani (23), who could be put for sale by his club. [md]

    Not. Going. To. Happen. 😆

  36. Well it was inevitable really, whether we like it or not, that Cesc was going to return and we were going to pay 35m+ for him. At least it aint 45m+.

    The way I see it, we dont need him now, but it’s an investment in our future. Cesc will likely play out the rest of his career at Barca and could very well be our captain one day.

    I also think the longer he stays at Arsenal the worse his injuries will get. Arsenal have a problem with keeping players fit, not sure why, but they definitely have a problem so the sooner we get Cesc in the hands of our team the better. That is one thing we can be sure will improve at Barca is his fitness.

    At the end of the day Pep obviously has a plan because he wants Cesc and he wants him bad so really who are we to question the man.

  37. Messi: “I won’t join any other team. If I leave Barcelona it’ll be to return to Argentina and retire.”

    I never get tired of hearing him say that.

    Via @barcastuff

  38. I have said that part of me wants Cesc back just to avoid having to go through this every summer and January. I was just being flippant. Sadly, there is no sarcasm font.

    Count me in the don’t want Cesc back until he’s free( or really really cheap). I don’t blame him for what he did at 16, but don’t sign an extension and then expect us(and it would only be us) to spend beaucoup bucks!

    Looks like we’re gonna get him, maybe Pep knows something we don’t (my thoughts keep going back to Kvevin’s scary comment yesterday that basically said what if Xavi’s tendon problem is worse than we know).
    Sigh… in Pep we trust 🙂

    If he doesn’t come, I doubt he’ll keep the armband at Arsenal and I doubt his stock will be as high there with the emergence of Wilshere and Nasri’s improvement. And I bet Arsenal is as tired as we are of the constant: Barca is my home…I love Arsenal…Barca is my home…I love Arsenal…

  39. “If Pep told me to throw myself off the third tier of Camp Nou, I’d think, ‘there must be something good down there’.”

    That’s all that needs to be said about the transfer (not that that will keep me from saying more:)). Normally when your manager wants someone, you tend to think, “Well, the manager has much more information than me so I’ll trust his judgment, even though I’m wary. Maybe Xavi’s tendonitis is bad, or maybe he has always dreamed of playing a 3-6-1, or wants to actually be able to rotate, or something else completely.” But if your manager is Pep frickin’ Guardiola, former club captain, most successful coach in club history, demi-god and all around stud, don’t you just automatically give the benefit of the doubt to any decision that he makes?

    1. Everyone blames here Rosell for absolutely everything but do not want to see Pep behind Rosell, because of Pep’s holy cow status.

      Pep is not at FCB for more than a season or two. And Pep knows that it is his once in three liftimes chance to try ot his crazy coaching ideas – but he needs Fabregas for his visions. And quickly.

      Just my two ultraspeculative cents.

    2. ” But if your manager is Pep frickin’ Guardiola, former club captain, most successful coach in club history, demi-god and all around stud, don’t you just automatically give the benefit of the doubt to any decision that he makes?”
      😆 Love this!

      “In pep we trust” doesn’t necessarily mean that we don’t question any decision, it just means that we accept that he has more information, experience, and working knowledge of the club and football in general in his left pinky finger than most humans have in their whole body. He can be wrong (i.e. Ibra, taking out Villa for Keita in the away game against Arsenal) but he has a more than decent track record of being right. Never questioning a decision would lead to boring blog posts anyway 🙂

    3. Agreed. I’m mostly just trying to get on board the delusion train. Half of being a fan in the internet age is second guessing every decision that is made, and over-analysing everything to smithereens. But now that the transfer seems inevitable, I might as well blindly pledge allegiance to the transfer, right?

  40. Iniesta was injured when we lost to Inter.

    With Cesc that wouldn’t happen.

    We need rotation with an older Xavi (remember his Achilles?)

    I’m for the deal.

    1. I think the biggest quality(ies) attracting us is the fact that he’s one of the world’s best midfielders. Yes, the prodigal son/Catalan stuff is smearing the lens, but if Fabregas weren’t the player that he is, we wouldn’t care is his name was Barca Camp Nou Fabregas, right?

    2. I think the biggest quality(ies) attracting us is the fact that he’s one of the world’s best midfielders.
      in fact the fact that he is one of the worlds best midfielders is so obvious i didnt bother mentioning that.

  41. One of the reporters who first broke the Sanchez to Barca story last week is still saying that Sanchez will only play in Barcelona. If he doesn’t – he’ll go back to Udinese.

    This was reported in MD today as well – so perhaps he’s sourcing it from there. But it’s interesting to hear.

    One of the guys on BBC5 also said the same thing yesterday – Sanchez is insisting on Barca but Udinese are determined to sell to the highest bidder. He also said Villas-Boas personally called Sanchez three times since taking over.

    Man City is one thing. Chelsea another – they could be a much more attractive place for Sanchez to play given their London location. I would have to think that if Chelsea did make this enormous offer and Sanchez is interested in playing for them this would get wrapped up quickly.

    We’ll see. One thing is for certain – if Sanchez does wind up in Barca it will only be because he really wanted to wear the shirt. He will have turned down million and millions and resisted what was likely enormous pressure from the team that signed him when he was 16.

    Let’s hope for Udinese does finish this one way or another this week. Interesting that Pozzo hasn’t upped the price again this week.

    The team’s biggest need right now is for another striker – and it’s not even close.

    1. I would really like to know how the hell are Chelsea gonna justify the enormous transfer fee spending throughout this year.
      If they sign sanchez for 45 along with torres’ 50 million , they will, as sure as hell, not gonna comply with uefa’s impending financial fair play rules that are kicking in next year.

    2. Rumor is that Chelsea may functionally ignore the fair play rules and see what happens.

      In other words – they may just conduct business as they want and see if they will be suspended.

      The actual language in the fair play requirements for the first two years is very vague. It may be relatively easy to still qualify.

      And that actually gives teams a major incentive to spend now before things get stricter.

      This is one of the reasons why RM is signing so many players now and are signing such young players. They may not get the chance to use their money as much later.

Comments are closed.