ARSENE Wenger says that he can persuade Cesc Fabregas to come back from Barcelona and rejoin Arsenal, because his former star midfielder "really loves this club".
Clearly still hurt by Fabregas’s departure in the summer of 2011, when his £35 million transfer to his boyhood team coined Arsenal’s reputation as a selling club, the manager said: “Fabregas was an exception, a world-class player.
"I’m not convinced that he will not one day come back here, because he is a real Arsenal man.
“He loves Arsenal, he watches every Arsenal game. But of course, Barcelona was his home town and you had to accept that that would come into it, especially with their club having the best team in the world at that time.”
A dramatic Fabregas return to the Emirates is unlikely to happen in the immediate future, given the 25 year-old’s flourishing into one of La Liga’s most dynamic attacking midfielders under coach Tito Vilanova.
Wenger admitted: “In the next two to three years certainly not – but maybe later.”
In the same way as Fabregas forms part of Barcelona’s ‘DNA’, Wenger spoke of trying to create a distinctive identity where Arsenal’s outstanding young British talents would have the club’s philosophy ingrained in them.
Claiming he was confident that striker Theo Walcott would sign a new contract by the end of this month, after a series of deals for Jack Wilshere, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Kieran Gibbs, Carl Jenkinson and Aaron Ramsey, Wenger said: “What you want is for these players to grow up and be successful together.
“You need a core that represents the values of the club.”