Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri will not feature in the Arsenal squad which travels to Newcastle to kick-off the Barclays Premier League campaign for 2011/12, according to Arsene Wenger.
Arsenal face Newcastle at the North East club’s St James’ Park in the late kick-off match on Saturday to get both side’s 2011/12 seasons under-way, however, after weeks of intense speculation, speaking at a press conference on the morning of Friday 12th August 2011 at Arsenal’s training ground, their manager, Arsene Wenger, told how both Fabregas and Nasri would not be in the squad to travel to Newcastle.
The announcement makes it seem likely that both players will leave Arsenal before the weekend. On Thursday, Wenger told how he wanted the proposed transfer of Fabregas, to Barcelona, and Nasri, to Manchester City, to be concluded “very quickly.”
Speaking of the players at Friday’s press conference, Wenger praised their professionalism, stating:
“I have not been disappointed by Nasri or Fabregas’ attitude. They have been professional.”
In Saturday’s match, Robin van Persie will captain Arsenal, in the absence of Cesc Fabregas, Wenger told, though he added that he had not thought about who would be captain for the rest of the season (should Fabregas leave).
Fabregas, who has four years remaining on his contract, is expected to fetch IRO £35 million from Barcelona to prize him away from the Gunners, while Nasri is believed to be the subject of a Manchester City bid of around £25 million.