Manchester United are serious in their pursuit of Barcelona midfielder Cesc Fabregas. That much became clear after David Moyes confirmed a second bid to Sky Sports. Whether the star's current club would move him remains unclear, however.
David Moyes confirms Manchester United have made second bid for Cesc Fabregas #SSN— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) July 22, 2013
Even though both bids have been rejected by Barcelona, United are already moving forward with a third attempt to sign the Spanish international, reports Kevin Palmer of ESPN. So far, Barca have remained firm in their stance that he's not for sale.
Manchester United are preparing to submit a third bid for Barcelona midfielder Cesc Fabregas, a source has told ESPN, but they are "wasting their time" Gerard Pique says.
United have now had two offers for the Spanish midfielder rejected by Barcelona, with reports in Spain suggesting Barca president Sandro Rosell has written to the Old Trafford club to insist he will not be selling the former Arsenal midfielder this summer.
The latest offer is reportedly in the range of £35 million, a massive amount that shows just how desperate the Red Devils are to bolster their midfield with an accomplished veteran. Fabregas has already proved himself in the Premier League with Arsenal, of course.
Yet, Barcelona have been quick to turn away United's first two attempts. It suggests they are sincere about keeping the midfielder heading into next season. All that's left for Moyes and Co. is to keep increasing the offer with hopes of changing their minds.
Ben Smith of the BBC passed along information from a Barca source, who said the club has made its stance crystal clear to United despite the offers.
"Fabregas is not for sale," a Barcelona source said on Monday. "The president (Sandro Rosell) has been very clear with Man United."
Old Trafford boss David Moyes earlier said he may be forced to admit defeat.
Failing to secure Fabregas, Moyes' first marquee target since taking over the United, would obviously be a disappointing turn of events for the defending Premier League champions. Upgrading the midfield should be the main goal ahead of the new campaign.
Fabregas is the perfect option. Not only would he represent an instant boost to the midfield, but he would bring some much-needed stability to a United squad that's preparing for life after Sir Alex Ferguson. It's a transition that's easier said than done.
Knowing that, it's hard to blame United for their continued pursuit of the versatile star. And if they believe Barcelona will eventually change their stance, it's worth the increased bids.
Will United be able to land Fabregas?
But at some point, likely in the very near future, United will have to accept Barcelona's stance and move on to other targets. They can't spend the entire summer chasing one player and end up without anybody to fill the midfield void.
It's a delicate balancing act that Moyes is coming to understand after not much experience with these high-profile pursuits at Everton. The potential reward of chasing Fabregas is clear—landing a terrific midfielder—but the risk of entering the title defense without any upgrade offsets it.
The situation should continue to play out in the immediate future. And when you consider the impact it could have on United and the Premier League as a whole, it certainly warrants watching.