When the ink dries on Alexis Sanchez's deal with Barcelona, the club will price itself out of the hunt for Cesc Fabregas.
The Catalan giants have pursued their former prospect for years, but the huge €26 million fee the club paid for the Chilean forward puts a rather sizable dent in Barcelona's transfer budget.
With Arsenal demanding nothing short of £40 million, this widens the gap between the football icons, especially when you consider how much the Sanchez deal will cost under certain circumstances.
Barcelona had hoped to negotiate a player plus cash deal for Sanchez, but both Bojan Krkic and Jeffren Suarez rejected moves to the Serie A side.
Weeks of wrangling followed, but the deal was finally confirmed on Thursday, with the 22-year-old signing a five-year deal after agreeing personal terms and passing a medical according to a statement on Barcelona's website. The deal will include 26 million euros up front with an addition 11.5 million euros in variables, with everything set to be finished off on Monday.
That is a huge sum of money, and in the wake of that deal, there is no way Barcelona can come close to what Arsenal wants for their captain
The La Liga champs have failed to come close in previous bids, and the Sanchez deal proves Barcelona was never that serious about inking the midfielder to a contract.
Will Barcelona sign Cesc Fabregas?
When you look at it objectively, who could blame them?
Barca has a midfield that is one of the best in the world, and the reality is that if they signed Fabregas, he would be nothing more than a glorified bench player.
That is the truth of the situation, and money only complicates the matter.
Barcelona has a fixed budget and isn't willing to wildly spend like other clubs, making two realities possible.
Either Barca backs away from the negotiating table, knowing they can't pay for Fabregas, or Barcelona continues to haggle for the Gunners' captain, hoping that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger caves and sells him away.
The latter is much more realistic, seeing as that is what the club has been doing all offseason long, and with no other targets on the horizon, Barca will turn their attention to Arsenal in an effort to make a deal.
While this will lead to plenty of frustration on both sides of the fence, it does give us one positive piece of news.
One way or another, a resolution to this tiresome saga is coming to an end, and sooner rather than later.