Jack Wilshere and Xavi have waded into the debate over Cesc Fabregas' future, with the player still the subject of a transfer wrangle between Arsenal and Barcelona.

The Arsenal skipper is a long-standing target of Barca, where he played his football as a boy before joining the Gunners in 2003, although the clubs have still not been able to agree a fee for the player.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said on Monday he was hopeful that Fabregas would line up again for the Premier League club next season, and teenage midfielder Wilshere called the Spain international a "role model" and claimed his skipper proved last summer he was a "real man" by remaining loyal to the club.

He said: "Loyalty is a big part of football and it shows if you are a real man or not.

"We have got loyalty at Arsenal - players have shown that in the past. Cesc showed that last year and hopefully a few more players can show it this year. Then we will see if we can get a trophy or not.

"We have to keep our best players if we want to win things. Any team wants to keep their best players. Look at Tottenham and what is happening with Luka Modric.

"Robin (van Persie) said he would be devastated if we lose Cesc and it's the same for me. He has been a role model for me and he is the player I want to aspire to."

However, Barcelona midfielder Xavi, who revealed he had been in contact with Fabregas, said the Arsenal man had told him he has been "suffering" because of his desire to rejoin the Catalan club.

Xavi told Barcelona's official website: "I spoke to Cesc in Ibiza and he said he was suffering because he wanted to come. It's more like, he did everything he could to come and wants to leave Arsenal - although he made it clear that now everything depends on the selling club."

Barcelona's interest in re-signing Fabregas has dominated the headlines during the last three summers and Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was again questioned about the issue on the club's pre-season tour of Asia.

"Cesc loves the club and hopefully we will manage. We know that this story for Barcelona has gone on for years now, we have to close that and focus on the season, hopefully with Cesc Fabregas," he told Sky Sports News.

Meanwhile an Arsenal team which did not include Fabregas, who remained in London for treatment on a hamstring injury, recorded a comfortable 4-0 win against a Malaysia XI in their first pre-season friendly with Aaron Ramsey, Theo Walcott, Carlos Vela and Tomas Rosicky all getting on the scoresheet.