Nou Camp side continue to haunt Gunners over Emirates Stadium skipper capture.
Barcelona vice president Josep Maria Bartomeu has admitted that Cesc Fabregas is probably worth the £53 million Arsenal initially demanded, after watching some of his early performances for the club.
The two clubs were involved in protracted negotiations for the creative midfielder’s signature that went on for more than 12 months, with the Spanish champions initially put off by Arsenal’s valuation of their prized asset.
After much wrangling a deal worth an initial £25m was agreed this summer, with that figure potentially rising by a further £10m based on various incentives and clauses. Fabregas has since made a great start to his career at Camp Nou, and Bartomeu has now acknowledged that perhaps Arsenal’s initial valuation was fair all along.
“After seeing the work he’s done since his arrival it is true that Cesc meets the €60m (£53m) valuation Arsenal initially demanded,” Bartomeu told Sport. “The kid is demonstrating a high level and quality in three weeks of training. The transfer was very good.
“In a market that is so open Cesc is worth a lot of money.
“It was complicated to close the deal,” he said. “The negotiations were very hard.”
This takes a certain level of evilness. Barcelona spent years, literally years, trying to tap up Arsenal skipper Cesc Fabregas, they used various underhand tactics to sow the seeds of a move that of course eventually went through this summer and now that the deal has been done and dusted, one would have thought that would be the end of the Catalan club’s ungentlemanly conduct, we were wrong.
Whilst it is of course perfectly acceptable, and common, for a club to undercut another whilst in the pursuit of a player it is however somehow very childish to then publicly claim this and doing so seemingly only to prove to Arsenal that they were in fact lying through their back teeth when they previously claimed that the fee they were willing to pay was a fair one, when everyone could see the reported £30m fee was way below the player’s value.
On the plus side the North London club did manage to get £24m or so for Samir Nasri who had just one year left on his contract and could therefore have left the club, Flamini style, for nothing in 12 months time, so perhaps these two deals even each other out, however you wouldn’t expect Arsenal to publicly state that they had “ripped off Man City”.