I've got an exam tomorrow so just a quick post. Moreover, I'm going to avoid writing an obituary for Cesc's Arsenal career because I'd be surprised to see him leave.
Nevertheless, it is important to negotiate a player-exchange deal if he is going to be sold. The biggest problem for Arsene last summer was that having sold Adebayor everybody knew he had money. It was why Chamakh wasn't signed last summer - Arsenal refused to submit to Bordeaux's increased demands.
Sure, Barcelona could pay Arsenal silly money for Cesc. But that money won't be especially useful if it can't be spent sensibly. So, for me, the minimum that Barcelona have to acquiesce to is this: if they want Cesc, we want Andres. People will say it is unlikely. But any other deal would just put us in too weak a position to negotiate with other teams.
More importantly, Cesc is a much better 'egg' than Anelka or Lassana Diarra. I could have seen either of them going on strike if Arsenal refused to sell them. The difference with Cesc is that he wouldn't. Maybe he wants to leave. I'm yet to be convinced of that. But even if he does, he has six years on his contract and is still very young. Arsenal have no need to sell Fabregas. It's highly unlikely the player would have an attitude problem if he stayed. Arsenal are not in any great need of money. So selling him seems an exceptionally bad idea.
My money is on Cesc Fabregas still being Arsenal captain next season. Hopefully this transfer saga can help persuade Arsene to buy a few players. But there is no reason for Arsenal to sell unless, Andres Iniesta will be wearing a red shirt next season. And even then, it would - in my eyes at least - require serious money on top.
Keep the faith,