Cesc Fabregas: I will stay at Arsenal this season
Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas has released a statement claiming that he will remain at the club this summer and that he will be 100% committed to the Gunners.
Fabregas, 24, was heavily linked with a move to Barcelona, who had two bids in the region of £30 million rejected this summer. But the midfielder now insists he will be staying at the Emirates after weeks of speculation.
"Firstly I would like to apologise to all the Arsenal fans for not speaking sooner about my future but I have not known what I was going to do until this moment,'' he said. "I cannot deny that joining a club like Barcelona was not an attractive move for me.
"This was the club where I learnt my football, it is my home town where my friends and family are and a club where I have always dreamed of playing. There are not many players in the world who would not want to play for Barcelona.
"I have had many conversations with Arsene Wenger both in person and over the phone over the last few months and although the content of those conversations will remain private, the conclusion is that Barcelona have had two formal offers rejected by Arsenal.''
Fabregas admits that he owes a lot to the club and that, as he will not be allowed to move this summer, he will be fully focused on bringing a trophy to the Emirates for the first time in five years.
"I am a professional and I fully understand that it is Arsenal's prerogative not to sell me,'' he said. ''I owe a lot to the club, manager and the fans and I will respect their decision and will now concentrate on the new season ahead with Arsenal.
"I can assure all the fans that now the negotiations have ended I will be 100% focused on playing for Arsenal. I am an Arsenal player and as soon as I step out on to the pitch, that is the only club I will be thinking about. I am looking forward to the start of the season and putting this speculation behind me."
Barcelona released a statement lamenting the failure to sign Fabregas while emphasising they never bid more than €40 million for a player they lost for nothing.
The statement said: "In the light of the statement released today regarding the contractual future of Cesc Fabregas, FC Barcelona regrets the decision of Arsenal FC to declare the player not for sale and their decision not to take into consideration the offers proposed. None of those offers, in any way, exceeded 40 million euros.''