Belfast Telegraph

Fabregas saga over as Barcelona agree £30m deal with Arsenal

By Sam Wallace

The saga surrounding Cesc Fabregas’s transfer to Barcelona appeared to be approaching a resolution last night with Arsenal finally ready to let him go as well as accepting an offer for Samir Nasri from Manchester City in two deals worth around £60m in total.

Barcelona anticipate they will be able to tie up a deal for Fabregas this week that is weighted in favour of the 23-year-old's achievements.

The deal under negotiation is thought to be €34m (£29.8m) paid up front and up to €6m in add-ons.

Those add-ons break down as €2m for each of the first two league titles Fabregas might potentially win and another €2m for a Champions League victory.

The payments are structured over his first five years at the club and contingent on him playing a certain number of games for Barcelona.

As for Nasri, it would now appear that Wenger is prepared to sell the player this summer to Manchester City for £23m.

Nasri is out of contract next summer and already had a £200,000-a-week deal on the table from City.

Having originally claimed that it would be impossible for Arsenal to sell both players, their clear desire to leave the club has left Wenger with little option.

It is understood that neither player will be in the squad to play Newcastle on Saturday evening.

Fabregas (pictured) has not played a game for Arsenal since April and has not participated at all in pre-season.

Nasri played for France last night in their 1-1 draw with Chile in a friendly in Paris.

The money will considerably strengthen Wenger's hand in the transfer market although how much he spends of it remains to be seen.

The Valencia midfielder Juan Mata is a priority. The amount of money at his disposal may mean that Wenger may also set his sights on a more expensive target such as the Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema.

Having signed only Gervinho and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain so far this summer, Wenger will have to strengthen in midfield with the absence of Fabregas and Nasri.

Also on the move is Samuel Eto'o, who is set to go to the newly wealthy Russian side Anzhi Makhachkala, according to the Inter chief executive Ernesto Paolillo. With Eto'o bringing in a large fee, the Italian said Wesley Sneijder would stay at Inter.

Meanwhile, Chelsea striker Fernando Torres was injured in the first half of a friendly against Italy last night, where a late goal from Liverpool midfielder Alberto Aquilani gave the hosts a 2-1 win. Torres is now a doubt for Chelsea’s opening game of the season against Stoke on Sunday.

A decision on whether to postpone the opening round of Premier League fixtures due to the unrest around major English cities was sschedule to be made today.

Belfast Telegraph


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