Laporta: Lines of communication open over Cesc
Joan Laporta has stated that the lines of communication are still open between Barça and Arsenal despite a €35 million bid from the Catalan giants for Cesc Fàbregas being rejected.
The Blaugrana president defended the offer made for the Gunners’ midfielder, which was
confirmed on Tuesday by corporate director general Joan Oliver, and explained that the next step is
being considered. “It is price that we consider to be market value,” Laporta said.
“Arsenal rejected it and now the technical secretary [Txiki Begiristain] should decide what
will happen next.”
Respect for Arsenal
“The lines of communication are still open,” Laporta continued. “I
am very confident that Arsenal will end up understanding the situation. For Cesc the best thing
would be to complete the transfer as soon as possible, before the start of the World Cup. But I
recognise that it will be complicated because Arsenal are totally within their rights to stand firm
and we have to respect that.”
Asked about the possibility that Cesc could activate Article 17 of FIFA’s regulations,
known as the Webster Ruling, where a player can break his contract and pay off his own contract
under certain conditions Laporta said. “I am not sure that Cesc would want to enter into
that, but we want to reach an agreement by talking to Arsenal rather than look at legal measures.
We respect Arsenal a great deal and we will continue to talk and go down that path.”
Reflecting on reports linking Touré Yaya with a move away from Barça this summer
Laporta insisted that he wanted the player to stay. “We all want him to remain here, but if
he ends up telling us that he wants to go then we will have to look for a solution,” he
On the subject of how much Barça would ask for the Ivory Coast enforcer the Blaugrana supremo
added: “He is a Champions League winner who has been very important for us and is one of the
starting players in the first team and we have never considered him to be a back-up player.
No for sale
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has also been in the news recently, but Laporta is adamant that the Swede
is going nowhere. “He is not for sale,” the president reiterated. The striker’s
agent Mino Raiola was quoted as aiming some comments at Pep Guardiola, but they were later
reworded. “I think that it was Ibra himself that explained things,” Laporta said.