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Singapore's Hariss named in AFF Best XI


Cesc saga set to rumble on

A decision on Cesc Fabregas' protracted move to Barcelona will not be taken for at least another week, with Arsenal determined to stick to their asking price of £40 million.

Xavi keen on Cesc deal
Fabregas feeling calm and optimistic
Gunners ready to cash in

Fabregas reported back for training this week determined to push through his move to Barca, but Arsenal are in no rush to do a deal unless it is on their terms.

Barcelona defender Dani Alves, though, is certain Fabregas will ultimately move to the Camp Nou. He told radio station, RAC1: "I am convinced Cesc will join us. Arsenal are in tourist class. Barcelona are in business class and any player would want to join us."

"I understand that he doesn't want to leave Arsenal on bad terms but I can understand why he would force the motor to come to Barca,'' Alves added. "Players always end up playing where they want to play and a club shouldn't keep an unhappy player.''

However, a source close to Fabregas told ESPNsoccernet on Wednesday: "It is far too early to know whether any deal will happen. It is something that will drag on until next week.

"I have no idea whether Cesc will go on tour with Arsenal to Asia at the weekend. He is injured at the moment."

Barcelona are refusing to pay more than £35 million and Arsenal are adamant the price is £40 million, but speculation that Real Madrid, Manchester City or Chelsea could take advantage of the dispute is wide of the mark. The source added: "Yes, it's all about the price, but I would discount other clubs."

The comments come in the wake of Barcelona sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta insisting on Wednesday that there had been no progress over the deal.

"Things have not changed," Zubizarreta said. "Much calm is needed in this operation in order to attend to events."

He added in AS: "We won't talk about signings until we close them. When they are done we will talk."

Meanwhile, Barca have confirmed the signing of Hercules youngster Kiko Femenia for an initial fee of €2 million.

Femenia, 20, made 33 top-flight appearances last season but will initially play for the Barcelona B side. The deal could rise to €3.5 million.


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