Fabregas selected for Catalonia

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The Independent Football

Catalonia coach Johan Cruyff has included Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas in his squad for the friendly against Argentina later this month - against the wishes of Gunners boss Arsene Wenger.

There seems little chance of Fabregas appearing in the game on December 22.

Arsenal are under no obligation to release the former Barcelona man as Catalonia are not recognised by FIFA and Wenger has already stated his opposition to the fixture, which falls just before the busy Christmas schedule.

Wenger said on Friday: "We don't allow the players to play in friendlies because we have too many games [at Arsenal].

"In life you always have to do well for the guy who pays you and the rest is less important.

"If they want to play charity games, the best way to be charitable is to sign a shirt, because basically I consider [playing in games] is on the cost of the club.

"In England we play football through the Christmas period.

"In all the other countries they stop and they play friendlies and charity games.

"There is a demand for Cesc but there is a demand for five or six other players."

Wenger's stance did not stop Cruyff from selecting Fabregas in a powerful squad.

The party includes six players from Barcelona; Victor Valdes, Carles Puyol, Xavi, Gerard Pique, Sergi Busquets and Bojan Krkic.

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