Fabregas could be a Barca player this week
Published 23:02 27/06/11 By Darren Lewis
Arsenal are ready to throw in the towel and sell Cesc Fabregas to Barcelona.
The 24-year-old Gunners captain has already been omitted from all promotional material for the club's new away kit, which is launched today.
A deal could be completed by this weekend, with a senior Arsenal official admitting that an improvement on last week's £27million bid will almost certainly be the tipping point.
The official said: "The offer was made formally in writing to our chief executive, Ivan Gazidis, and we said no straight away.
But on the subject of an anticipated new offer, he added: "If it's enough, I expect we'll have to sell."
The Gunners want between £40m and £60m, but Fabregas could be released for £35m in a bid to put an end to a saga that has been rumbling for more than a year.
Some Arsenal fans believe that would represent a PR disaster for a player widely regarded - despite the controversy - as one of the best midfielders in the world.
The club, however, appear unwilling to let the situation affect preparations for the new season.
As such, they are prepared to finally grant Fabregas his wish of returning to the club from which they nabbed him as a 16-year-old back in 2003.
The Gunners remain incensed that Barca have used a wide range of tactics to unsettle their prize asset over the last 12 months and are driving a hard bargain.
Yet Barca president Sandro Rosell has already claimed this summer that the Catalans will not pay over the odds.
He said recently: "It is clear that this year his value is less."