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Did Arsenal allow Fabregas to talk to Real Madrid?

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The quotes this morning from the Mail of Cesc Fabregas talking to Real Madrid and turning them down to stay on at Arsenal are quite interesting:

On his conversation with Calderon and sporting director Predrag Mijatovic, Fabregas said:

“I have talked with them because they seem to me like spectacular people and they made a great effort to get me to sign.

“It was a very difficult decision for me but with Thierry Henry leaving Arsenal, I feel that I can’t leave the club that has done so much for me. I have a great responsibility this season and I can’t wait to get started and try to win things.

“It made me very excited that a club as big as Madrid were interested in me and that made it a very difficult decision. It’s a chance that doesn’t come around very often but I am only 20 and I have to keep improving and I want to do that at Arsenal.”

Addressing fears that Wenger may not commit himself to Arsenal beyond next summer, when his contract ends, Fabregas added:

“I have every confidence that the manager will sign a new deal.”

Did Wenger (and Arsenal) actually allow Fabregas and his agent to talk to Calderon and Predrag Mijatovic? If that actually happened, then two things come to mind:

  1. Real Madrid must have been offering an amazing amount of money to Arsenal to get that sort of access.
  2. Is it possible that the extra-long contract Fab has signed with Arsenal has a buy-out clause that Real Madrid triggered and thus were allowed ‘official’ access to his agent and him?

What do you think?

thanks to Arseblog for pointing me to the story.

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Ahmed Bilal created Sportslens in 2006. He is a business consultant and entrepreneur who helps businesses identify and overcome their biggest challenges. He’s also the founder of Football Media, an online advertising agency that specialises in sports and male audience targeting, with a monthly reach of 100m+ sports fans in the UK and US. He’s also the previous owner of Soccerlens.com – a sports news site that reaches 3m+ readers / month.