Barca chief: Fabregas talks going in the right direction

BARCELONA chiefs insist they are closing in on a deal for Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas despite committing £33m to signing Chile forward Alexis Sanchez.

The Spanish club’s sporting vice-president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, said long-running and tense negotiations with the Gunners were now progressing well.

“They are going in the right direction,” he said. “We will try and do what we can with the money we have. We have until 30 August and I am sure we will.”

Fabregas is not with the rest of Arsenal’s squad on a pre-season trip to Germany amid speculation his long-anticipated switch is imminent.

Sanchez has signed a five-year deal, completing a move from Udinese that will cost Barca an initial £23m plus a potential performance-related £10m.

Aston Villa have agreed a fee of £9.5m for Wigan winger Charles N’Zogbia, who has also interested Everton and Sunderland. The 24-year-old is expected to sign a five-year contract at Villa Park.
Fulham have signed Switzerland Under-21 midfielder Pajtim Kasami from Palermo on a four-year contract. The Macedonia-born 19-year-old can operate in a number of roles and made 24 appearances last season.
Tottenham defender Bongani Khumalo has joined Championship outfit Reading on a season-long loan. The South African, 24, joined Spurs in January and enjoyed a spell on loan at Preston late last term.