By Tony Attwood
1. Because as soon as Barca have him they will do the same thing with Ignasi Miquel who left Barca under similar circumstances.
This really is a key point because Arsenal transferred Cesc quite properly within the laws of the game, and yet the local mayor talks about Arsenal kidnapping the player, and their own team endlessly bleat about Cesc having something odd about his DNA.
Cesc was transferred aged 16 according to UK law. In Spain the club cannot offer a contract at 16, so yes, the UK clubs have an advantage. But there’s two other points.
First the player and his family has to want to come and has to want to sign. Contrary to Barca commentaries, the player is not kidnapped or held against his wishes.
Second, in other areas Spain has the advantage. Take the issue of getting an EU passport. In Spain it is much easier for a player to get the work permit and much easier to get an EU passport than in the UK. In the UK it is easy for Australians to get a work permit. The problem is there are not that many great Australian players around.
Miquel is playing for the Spain under 18 side in the world cup at the moment. Barca will be after him as soon as they have Cesc – if they have him.
2. Because we might never get the money.
Last year Barca failed to pay their players, and since then even the club has admitted its financial problems which for year after year they denied having. In fact those denials are a good reason for us not to believe a word the club says.
But we have covered their problems here continuously, showing the depth of their financial ineptitude. There’s no doubt they don’t have the money to buy any new players, and yet they go on doing so. What’s more they have nowhere to go to get more money. They are unlikely to get any more paying customers through the door, they have sold the sacred shirt front, they have done world-wide marketing to death, they have a unique TV deal that gives them something like 25% of all the football TV revenue in Spain, and they can hardly be more successful than they already are.
Indeed that is the disaster of Barca. The most successful team on the planet, and they are losing money.
The transfer that could give Barcelona the funds to make a successful bid for Cesc Fábregas could also help Roma limit their exposure to Uefa’s financial fair play rules. That was the transfer of Bojan Krkic to Roma on a two-year contract.
But even that deal is odd and it shows how crazed the club has become. He was sold for €12m but Barcelona can buy him back for €13m when the contract expires. If they do not take up that option, Roma will have to pay €40m transfer fee to take him on permanently.
This is a semi-crazed way of getting around FFP since Krkic will be registered as being on loan. Thus Barcelona can spend the fee as revenue.
3. Because Barca already have a team and not only would Cesc risk not being paid he will also risk not playing.
Xavi Hernández and Andrés Iniesta play central midfield for Barca and for Spain which is why Fábregas was on the bench during the 2010 World Cup.
Barca play 4-1-2-3. So where does Fábregas fit? I don’t know. Maybe you do. The manager is not going to take out Sergio Busquets and play him in Song’s position.
So maybe it is all a hoax?
Sandro Rosell, the Barcelona president, has spoken about Cesc’s declining value and talks about waiting until 31 August. Arsenal are saying, deal now or not at all.
Rossell said, “There is a sum of money in the strong box set aside for this signing but if it doesn’t work out it will be kept in the box for something else.”
But Arsenal know Barcelona are £400m in debt, which is one reason why they reduced their bid this year by £10m from last year.
Or a double bluff?
Barca have to bid for Cesc to keep the fans and the local papers happy – having him is a publicity stunt. But Mr Wenger is brilliant at knowing just when a player’s usefulness is coming to an end. Although Thierry Henry won stuff at Barca he never reached anything like the earlier heights he had reached at Arsenal. But he was a trophy that Barca wanted, so they paid.
And trophy is what they have in mind here – the mighty but bankrupt Barca can still click their hands and clubs have to pay up.
So my guess is that if Arsenal do sell him it will be because a) Barca have offered more than his worth, and b) Arsenal don’t need him any more.
I would refer you back to the two teams I outlined in the last post…
One of the Polish pair
Sagna Vermaelen Jagielka Gibbs
Gervinho Van Persie Mata
Back up players also all in place in every position
The other Pole
Carl Jenkinson, Laurent Koscielny, Djourou, Traore
Miyaichi, Chamakh, Walcott