Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen has admitted that team-mate Cesc Fabregas "carries Barcelona DNA" but stressed that his captain is fully focused on playing for the Gunners this season.
Fabregas was embroiled in a summer-long transfer saga as Barcelona and their players expressed a desire for him to move to the Nou Camp on several occasions, with Arsenal rejecting a €35 million bid from the Catalans.
After three months of speculation, the Gunners captain revealed in August that he would stay at Emirates Stadium for the coming season, though he did admit that a move had been a tempting prospect.
"I cannot deny joining a club like Barcelona was not an attractive move for me," Fabregas said. "This was the club where I learned 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."
And Vermaelen revealed that even though Fabregas informed his team-mates of his desire to move back to Spain, he will be fully focused on the Arsenal cause this season.
"Cesc carries Barcelona in the heart, in his DNA ... therefore it is impossible for him to forget about them," Vermaelen told Talksport.
"He was determined to go to Barca last summer, he more or less confessed it in the dressing room. But that is past history. Now he is 100 per cent ready to put his all in to a great season with Arsenal."