'New Cesc Fabregas' Sergi Samper, 15, to spark Arsenal-Barcelona battle  

Monday, 25 October 2010

Barcelona are set to face another transfer scrap with Arsenal, but this time the boot is on the other foot as the Gunners aim to snatch top-rated Sergi Samper - dubbed the 'next Cesc Fabregas' - from under the Catalan club's noses.
According to reports in Spain, Samper is holding out over a contract offer from Barca with Arsene Wenger tracking the wonderkid midfielder as he approaches his 16th birthday.

The saga could come to a head in January, with Arsenal rumoured to be considering making their official offer when the transfer window reopens.

And it has echoes of the situation that saw Fabregas, who is now Arsenal captain, turn his back on Barcelona to pursue a career in London at a similar age in 2003.

Samper is considered to be one of the 'next big things' in Spanish football, and could be offered a tempting four-year contract by the Premier League club as well as assurances of regular first-team football from a relatively young age.

And, according to Spanish sources, he is tempted to follow in the footsteps of Fabregas, who, after developing his skills in the Arsenal set-up, is now one of the world's most sought-after midfielders.

If Samper does move, it would be a bitter irony for Barca, who thought they'd won an ill-tempered tug of war over Fabregas in the summer before the Catalan-born 23-year-old opted to stay at the Emirates Stadium instead of moving back to La Liga.

Read more: http://www.metro.co.uk/sport/football/845045-new-cesc-fabregas-sergi-samper-to-spark-arsenal-barca-battle#ixzz13NGVWZdb


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