Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 21 August 2014

Cesc Fabregas haunted by failed Barcelona dream

Cesc Fabregas understands why Arsenal felt allowing him to join Barcelona was “impossible” — but maintains the Gunners must find their “winning mentality” this season.

Fabregas was close to returning to his boyhood club during the summer, only for Arsenal to stand firm as they rejected a £35million offer for their star midfielder whom they have nurtured since he was 16.

“I maintain that I was right because it (to play for Barcelona) is a dream I have had since childhood,” Fabregas said.

“The truth is that the coach (Arsene Wenger) is like a second father to me. I told him what I thought. There were difficult moments.

“In the end, when I spoke to Wenger he told me ‘no' — he was very emphatic, that the transfer was impossible.”

Fabregas maintained: “I am satisfied for all parties. It wasn't to be and that's that, though in my head I keep thinking it could have been a good opportunity. But here (at Arsenal) I have everything. I am still happy. I am very comfortable here, I like the club, lead the team, play football.

“We just need to start winning titles because we have a wealth of quality. A winning mentality is missing.”

Meanwhile, Gunners boss Wenger has revealed Theo Walcott and Nicklas Bendtner could both be back in the squad to face Birmingham tomorrow as Arsenal aim to halt a run of successive league defeats which has left them seven points behind leaders Chelsea.

Fabregas, though, may need more time to recover from a hamstring problem

“Nicklas Bendtner is back in the squad and Kieran Gibbs is back too,” Wenger said. “Theo might be involved as well. Cesc is very, very short and unlikely to be involved. He has a little chance for Tuesday (in the Champions League against Shakhtar Donetsk).”

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