Guardiola: Arsenal agree to negotiate
Barça were rebuffed by Arsenal in their pursuit of Fabregas 12 months ago but are hoping to persuade the Gunners to part with their influential captain this summer.
Speaking at a press conference today, Guardiola was quoted as saying on the Barcelona website: "We were interested last year, but Arsenal did not put him on the market. This year they've agreed to negotiate and we will try to reach an agreement."
He added: "You all know about Barça's interest in Cesc. There is money set aside for this player and until the last day we will try to bring in Cesc because he will make the squad better. I hope that something can be sorted. Until 31 August there is time, but at times things don't always work out."
Guardiola also spoke out against the possibility of Fabregas, who missed Arsenal's Asia tour to nurse a troublesome hamstring , forcing his exit from the Gunners, saying: "I think that Cesc has to do what Arsenal ask. For me, I wouldn't like one of my players to say 'now I'm not training because I want to go'."
Barça sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta added about the La Liga champions' interest in Fabregas: "The position towards Arsenal is one of maximum respect because the club own the player. Also towards the player [himself].
"From there, our position is to try and see eye to eye [on a deal], creating proposals that may be of interest, while always maintaining the maximum respect. We don't have a style of doing things by force."
However, while midfielder Fabregas remains near the top of Barça's wish-list, Guardiola believes strengthening their attack is currently the most pressing matter. He said: "The priority is an attacker."