I believe Pep Guardiola is a smart man.
So what the hell was a smart man doing this week sitting in front of a microphone and speaking the names of the players Barça's supposedly interested in signing and still is negotiating for?
If anything, that could only make their prices rise.
The negotiations are over and the Cesc Fábregas and Alexis Sánchez transfer drama has finally come to an end.
But when I say negotiations are over, there are still two possibilities:
1) Cesc and Alexis are signed
One of the scenarios where I could see someone openly talking about their transfer prospects is that they already have them signed. That way there's no risk in increasing their value and you don't shoot yourself in the foot when negotiations aren't finished yet.
By today, it's well known that Alexis Sánchez is just a few days away from being a Barcelona player, so no real news there. Udinese have basically said it's all been agreed.
On the Arsenal front, however, things don't seem so clear. Cesc is still very much a Gunner and Arsene Wenger seems determined to keep him?
So, what's going on?
If this is the case, I personally believe it's all agreed and everyhting is done. And in order to make his transfer cheaper, it was also permitted he would stay in Arsenal for their preseason so the Gunners would recieve their player related bonuses in their Asia tour.
2) Alexis is signed; Barça's not interested in Cesc
The other possibility is that it's been agreed internally among the decision-makers at Barcelona that Fábregas won't come this season to the Camp Nou.
This also makes sense because saying names you don't intend to negotiate isn't bad for the club. It might even be beneficial in the sense that you create a distraction in order to sign the players you're actually looking to sign.
So whatever is going on on Camp Nou, this much is true: the negotiations for Cesc and Alexis are over.
If they're not, Barcelona are way more stupid than I thought.
Whether Cesc lands and whether this conference was a smoke curtain covering up Pep's real intentions or not remains to be seen.
My take on things?
I'm leaning towards believing Cesc and Alexis can already be considered among the Blaugrana.
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