After a fresh wave of speculation linking him with a summer move to Barcelona, Arsenal captain ‘Cesc Fabregas has muddied the waters regarding his Emirates future, by admitting that he wants a decision to be made one-way-or-the-other before the World Cup begins in June.
Whilst he has openly admitted his desire to rejoin Barca at some point during his career, Fabregas has, up until now, firmly spurned the advances of his boyhood club and seen his desire to remain in north London cited on several occasions.
However, new quotes circulating in the press today seem that the Spanish midfielder may have undergone somewhat of a sea change;
“I want to make a decision about my future before the World Cup. It’s impossible to perform at a tournament such as the World Cup if you’re not fully focused on the sporting aspects of the game. It does not benefit anyone.”
“If I ever leave Arsenal it will be to play for Barcelona. I would like to go, whether they want me or not is another matter. I am 23 years old and I have a long career in front of me. I’ve never hidden the fact that playing for Barcelona is a dream that I would like to fulfil.”
Fabregas then went on to insist that he doesn’t intend on quitting Arsenal just yet – at least not before the final round of Spanish league fixtures are played and the title-race decided;
“I’m very happy at Arsenal. I’m in no hurry to leave the club. Barcelona are still playing for the Liga title and I’m still an Arsenal player. It would be a lack of respect to discuss a transfer now.”
All in all, and when taken in isolation, these quotes show a definite weakening in Fabregas’ stance regarding his short-term future. The Gunner’s skipper has stated on many occasions his frustration at Arsenal’s lack of silverware over the last few campaigns, and his manager’s reluctance to spend big in the pursuit thereof.
Arsene Wenger has, however, promised to break type and bring in some proven talent to the club over the summer.
So the question remains, will these (let’s face it) hypothetical signings be enough to convince Fabregas that Arsenal are ready to realistically challenge for honours on at least one front next term?
Or, after a good couple of years of attempting to quell the Spaniard’s unease, will it be a question of too little too late on the Gunner’s part?