Wenger losing fight to keep Fabregas and Nasri

 

The Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger yesterday assured supporters he will fight to keep both Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri at the club but significantly stopped short of promising the pair would not be leaving the Emirates this summer.

Fabregas is inching closer to a move to Barcelona, with Arsenal valuing their captain at £40m. Nasri is also agitating for a move away, having failed to agree terms on a new contract, and has been subject to a tentative £20m bid from Manchester United.

Losing both midfielders would be a painful blow for Wenger, but he seemed to accept that it may be impossible to keep them. He said: "Our position is always the same – we want to keep Cesc and I will fight as hard as I can to keep him.

"Samir Nasri is exactly the same. We will do everything we can to keep him."

Wenger's statement is in marked contrast to that of Tottenham Hotspur chairman Daniel Levy, who on Wednesday attempted to fend off Chelsea's interest in midfielder Luka Modric by saying: "Luka Modric will not be sold. That's the end of it."

Arsenal leave for their pre-season tour of Malaysia tomorrow, but Fabregas (right) is unlikely to travel with them, his long-standing hamstring injury giving the club a convenient reason for his absence.

Wenger said: "Fabregas will not travel because he still has a small muscular problem. He will stay and practice here."

Nasri however is due to fly to Asia with the first team, despite making it clear to the club that he wants to move to United.

Arsenal are reluctant to sell the Frenchman to a direct Premier League rival and have set the price at £25m for a player who will be free to leave for nothing in a year's time should he wind down his contract.

Wenger said he is working "long nights" to bring players of "exceptional quality" to Arsenal. He said: "For me, the best thing is not to talk too much about it. The more you speak about things, the less chance you have to achieve them.

"The only thing that I can promise you is that we are working very hard and we have had some long nights to achieve what we want to achieve."

"I can understand [the impatience among the fans]. Believe me, I know all the clubs in the world and everybody needs the same players for the same positions.

"We are at the top level and therefore need exceptional quality to strengthen our side.

"My responsibility is first of all not to lose players and then to add and make us stronger. Let's hope we can bring in one or two more of top quality."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Suited and booted in the Lanvin show at the Paris menswear collections
fashionParis Fashion Week
Arts and Entertainment
Kara Tointon and Jeremy Piven star in Mr Selfridge
tvActress Kara Tointon on what to expect from Series 3
Voices
Winston Churchill, then prime minister, outside No 10 in June 1943
voicesA C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
News
i100
News
An asteroid is set to pass so close to Earth it will be visible with binoculars
news
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch has spoken about the lack of opportunities for black British actors in the UK
film
News
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project