Barca finally admit defeat in pursuit of Arsenal skipper

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Barcelona have admitted that they knew they were facing an impossible task trying to lure Arsenal skipper Cesc Fabregas to Camp Nou after they submitted their first and only bid.

Barca’s pursuit of Fabregas was no secret, as many of their players openly expressed their desire to see him playing in La Liga next season.

The likes of Lioinel Messi, Gerard Pique and Andres Iniesta were just a few who told the press Fab would be more than welcome at the Catalan club.

Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina and Barca captain even made Cesc wear a the claret and blue of the Spanish champions in their country’s World Cup celebrations.

The club then followed their interest up with a firm bid of £33.5 million, which was rejected point-blank by Arsene Wenger.

And Barcelona sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta has admitted it would have been impossible to tempt the Gunners into selling – no matter how much the player wanted the move.

He told Barca’s official website: “Both the club and the player did as much as possible. Our second offer was €40m.

“However, from the moment Arsenal said they didn’t want to negotiate, we respected their position.

“We would have liked to have signed him but we weren’t able to negotiate. It wasn’t a disappointment, as it was simply impossible.”

Relations between the two European powershouses became fractured during the negotiations but Zubizarreta has admitted they are now back on good terms.

Thanks to the conversations, we have re-established contact with Arsenal,” he added, not ruling out a potential bid next summer despite the arrival of Javier Mascherano.

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Francesc Fabregas

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