Cesc Fabregas’s long-anticipated move back to Barcelona looked to take one step closer to reality this week as Fabregas apparently informed Arsene Wenger of his wish to rejoin the Catalan club.
Arsenal have apparently set a price tag of 40 million pounds for the talented playmaker who joined the London side on a transfer from Barcelona’s youth club as a 16-year-old. Reports have also circulated that Barcelona might offer Yaya Toure or perhaps Zlatan Ibrahimovic plus cash in exchange for Fabregas.
It’s easy to see how a quick and mobile player like Yaya Toure would fit in well with the Arsenal system. The idea of Zlatan Ibrahimovich at Arsenal, however, would seem slightly more complex, although very intriguing.
Upon arriving at Barcelona, Ibra got off to a rousing start. However injuries seem to have put the Swedish striker into a sulky slump for much of the second half of the season. And it’s possible the Swede’s style is to individualistic for the collective dynamic of Barcelona.
Arsenal play a similar past-passing, possession style of football to Barca’s. However this season has seen them bullied and lacking of a strong target striker to play up front.
Robin Van Persie’s injury forced Wenger to put his faith in the inconsistent Nicholas Bendtner this season. It's easy to speculate that Ibra’s size and physical imposition might be more of an asset on the front lines in the tough-tackling English Premier League than they are in the Primera.
The muscular presence of Sol Campbell has helped the Gunners shore up things in the back this past season. Zlatan Ibrahimovic could provide a similar stabilizing effect up top. An individualistic striker like Ibra, when firing on all cylinders, might be just what Arsenal need to mount an attack as consistently potent as that of a Drogba-lead Chelsea or a Rooney-fronted Manchester United.
With both Fabregas and Andrey Arshavin reportedly bucking for transfers to the Camp Nou, the notion of Ibra landing in north London this summer would seem to be a very real possibility.