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Page last updated at 12:39 GMT, Thursday, 21 October 2010 13:39 UK

Arsene Wenger confident Cesc Fabregas will stay

Fabregas is contracted to the Gunners until the end of 2013/14 season
Fabregas is contracted to the Gunners until the end of 2013/14 season

By David Ornstein

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says he is confident he can keep hold of Cesc Fabregas "for a few more years".

The World Cup winner wanted to join Barcelona in the summer and was close to returning to his hometown club.

But he was denied a move to the Nou Camp by the Gunners, who have a contract with the Spaniard until 2014.

Barca are expected to make a new bid for the 23-year-old midfielder at the end of the season but Wenger believes Fabregas will remain at the Emirates.

"Barcelona has an attraction because he grew up there," Wenger told shareholders at Arsenal's AGM on Thursday.

"At the end of the day, I believe he wants to win with this club. For how long I don't know but hopefully for many, many years. I'm not pessimistic. I'm confident we will keep him for a few more years.

He deeply loves this club, believe me... if he did not love the club, he would have gone

Wenger on Fabregas

"He deeply loves this club, believe me. If he did not love the club, he would have gone."

Arsenal rejected two summer bids from Barcelona for Fabregas, who joined the Gunners from the Spanish giants in July 2003.

The player conceded a return to the Nou Camp was very tempting and revealed Wenger had played a key role in convincing him to remain in London.

"I cannot deny that joining a club like Barcelona was not an attractive move for me," he stated in August.

"This was the club where I learnt my football, it is my home town where my friends and family are and a club where I have always dreamed of playing.

"There are not many players in the world who would not want to play for Barcelona."

However, he insisted he was "100% focused" on playing well for Arsenal.

"I owe a lot to the club, manager and the fans and I will respect their decision and will now concentrate on the new season ahead with Arsenal," he added.

Wenger also told shareholders that the club had the cash to make one or two signings in the January transfer window.


But when asked if Wayne Rooney would be a possible target following the striker's decision to leave Manchester United, the Frenchman was non-committal.

He said the situation was "too sensitive" to talk about.

As for his own future, Wenger insisted he was enjoying his job and would continue to do it as long as he felt fulfilled and capable of making a positive impact.

"I have to consider that this is a job that demands huge physical energy and as long as I have it I know I will have the desire," he said.

"This is the club of my heart, the club of my life, and as long as I can contribute to help this club to be successful I will do it."

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see also
Vermaelen injury lay-off extended
22 Dec 10 |  Arsenal
Wenger hails Fabregas & Wilshere
19 Oct 10 |  Europe
I'm staying at Arsenal - Fabregas
06 Aug 10 |  Arsenal

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