Arsenal & Manchester United alerted as Barcelona open door to Fabregas exit

Barcelona are set to put Arsenal and Manchester United on alert by preparing to listen to offers this summer for Cesc FabregasGoal understands.

The Barca academy graduate is at a crossroads in his career as he enters the final two years of his contract with the Catalan club in July.

Fabregas was jeered by home supporters during Barcelona’s recent 2-1 home victory over Athletic Bilbao and has become a scapegoat for fans during some troubled times for the club on and off the pitch.

Goal has learned that the Spanish giants are now open to the possibility of selling the versatile midfielder, who turns 27 on Sunday, this summer.

The player himself is also said to be ready to consider the possibility of being lured from the club to which he returned in 2011 after controversially leaving for Arsenal as a 16-year-old.

Fabregas is likely to sit down for talks with senior Barcelona officials at the end of the season, when his future and the issue of whether or not he is to be offered a contract extension will be top of the agenda.

The Spain international is on the radar of both United and Arsenal, where he spent eight highly successful years and finished up as club captain.

Both Premier League clubs have been given informal indications that Fabregas could be available, although the player’s lengthy association with Barcelona and the politics involved with him leaving would make a move extremely delicate.

United tabled two bids for Fabregas last summer, when former manager David Moyes made no attempt to hide the club’s attempt to prise him from Camp Nou.

Arsenal also explored utilising the first-option clause inserted in Fabregas’s Barca contract, with Arsene Wenger understood to have talked on the phone “quite a bit” with his former skipper about returning to the club where he blossomed into one of Europe’s outstanding young midfielders.

Arsenal have a fixed price on Fabregas’s buy-back clause, believed to be €29 million (£23.8m at current currency rates), and, should another club make a concrete offer for the midfielder, Barca would be obliged to inform the Londoners, who would then be given first refusal.

Only Sergio Busquets (43) has started more than Fabregas’s 42 matches for Barcelona this season and his tally of 14 assists is the best at the club, while he has also weighed in with 13 goals.

However, Fabregas has often found himself on the bench for the marquee matches during the last three seasons or withdrawn from the team when he starts the key games.

Even though Xavi is 34 and Andre Iniesta turns 30 in June, Barca are ready to consider the possibility of Fabregas leaving as they step up plans to add more pace in their midfield.

Barcelona were eliminated at the quarter-final stage of the Champions League, lost the Copa del Rey final to Real Madrid and currently sit second in La Liga, four points behind leaders Atletico Madrid with three matches remaining.