The exit door from Barcelona seems to be getting wider as the days go on for Cesc Fabregas, and the vultures are circling sensing this might just be their lucky day. Figures of around £35million are being thrown about as the right amount to land the still only 27 year old, and it seems Manchester United are one of the forerunners, especially since it appears their raid on Bayern Munich players Toni Kroos and Thomas Müller seems to have gone south.
However, Arsenal have first option should a bid come in for Fabregas and there is much talk of the ex Gunners captain returning to the nest, but in my own opinion, while Fabregas is unquestionably a class player, he is not required in the Arsenal setup as there already exists a wealth of talent which is quite capable of filling any roll Fabregas would fit. Players like Jack Wilshire, Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil, Tomas Rosicky, and Santi Cazorla are more than capable in the attacking midfield roll, interchangeable behind the main striker and at times criss-crossing positions at a bewildering rate.
There is of course the question of the psychological impact that bringing back Cesc would have on the club. The change in the team when Ozil arrived was palpable, and while the player himself faded, the impetus was maintained and the belief garnered manifested itself in an FA Cup trophy. Cesc was loved by all at the club, and only a fool could begrudge him returning to his home to play for the team he grew up with, at the time he did. So, a return to the Emirates from an emotional point of view would certainly not be an issue, but the question remains, is he really needed?
There is of course, one other aspect to consider, albeit a cynical one, but one which has happened time and again over the last few years with players. A Cesc Fabregas at Arsenal stops there being a Cesc Fabregas at Manchester United / insert suitors here. While it seems Arsenal would not need to pay the same amount as another purchaser to acquire the Catalonian due to a buyback clause upon selling to Barcelona, they would still need to pay his wages, which would surely constitute well over £140,000 a week. Quite a chunk of money if you're not intending to actually use the player, and also I find it difficult to believe Fabregas himself would agree with the ethics or the lack of game time.
If Arsenal do bring Cesc back, I believe someone else in the current midfield would have to make way, but who it would be as of yet I simply cannot determine. Let's not forget, talents like Gnabry and Zelalem are waiting in the wings, and Walcott and the Ox are also going to be fighting for places. The only way I can accommodate a Fabregas into the team would be to see Lukas Podolski leave, but again with talk of Benzema, Remy, Vela, and Bony prominent in the media Podolski himself must be expecting to be moved on.
Would you, the Arsenal fans, take Cesc back and sacrifice one of the current players? Would you be willing to accept the wages outlay just to stop him playing for a competitor? Or are you content with what Arsene Wenger has already and consider the former captain free to go to somewhere like Man United as it will have little or no impact on Arsenal?
For myself, I'd hate to see him in a United shirt, in the same way as it will pain me to see Sagna in a City shirt, but while I really wish Sagna would stay, I just can't see how Fabregas in an Arsenal shirt again would progress the current team. As a club, we should not be buying players which are deemed no longer good enough to be playing for our direct competitors.