Saturday’s papers don’t make happy reading for Reds desperate to see David Moyes land a world class signing as tabloids and broadsheets almost unanimously agree that, despite their relentless pursuit over the last couple of weeks, Manchester United are set to miss out on yet another midfielder.
Cesc Fabregas is likely to remain a Barcelona player for the foreseeable future, after new Barcelona manager Gerardo Martino has made clear that the former Arsenal captain will be pivotal to his plans and, despite United’s attempt of luring the 26-year-old away from the Camp Nou, Fabregas is now very unlikely to leave the Catalan club.
However, United have had two previous offers worth £26m and £30m respectively, rejected by Barcelona and on Thursday David Moyes confirmed that the bid was “ongoing” prompting speculation that United might be considering a club’s record bid worth around £35m.
“I’m not going to involve myself in the club’s accounts, but considering the club has already rejected two offers, I would guess it will reject a third. In other words, Fábregas will remain here,” said the Argentine manager.
Barcelona vice-president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, reiterated Martino’s stance: “It’s logical that we’ve had offers for Fábregas because he is a quality player, but he is not for sale. Whatever offer United make, however big, we will say no. Cesc Fábregas will stay a Barcelona player. That United shows interest in Cesc Fábregas is normal. He is a truly great player. It doesn’t annoy us.
“It gives us pride to have such a good player in our team that United want him because they are a great club. But whatever offer arrives from them we are not going to sell Cesc Fábregas. We are counting on him. I think Tata [Martino] was clear that he is counting on him as a player and Andoni Zubizarreta [the director of football] from the first day when we asked him about it saying there was an offer he replied Cesc is not for sale. We are very happy with him.”
Both papers believe that United’s only chance to land their man rests with Fabregas himself. United seem convinced that the former Arsenal captain is desperate to return to the Premier League but, considering the extent Fabregas went to to force his way out of Arsenal to join Barcelona, the prospect of him submitting an official transfer request sounds extremely unlikely.
United, continues the Guardian, will now turn their attention to Marouane Fellaini, Luka Modric and Yohan Cabaye but, would they be the sort of world class signings Ed Woodward promised David Moyes?
The Daily Mail, however, believes that United still have a chance to land their man and proceed to make a rather bold claim, according to which “Fabregas is keen on a move to Old Trafford and wants to be part of David Moyes’s Barclays Premier League squad by the time the summer transfer window closes on September 2.”
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