(Photo Credit/Source- independent.ie)
Cesc Fabregas paid an emotional farewell to Chelsea fans after thier comfortable 2-0 win over Nottingham Forest in the 3rd round of the FA Cup.
The Spaniard looked like he played his last game for the club, ahead of his move to Monaco.
Fabregas started this game today in his 198th appearance for the club since joining from Barcelona at the start of the 2014/15 season for a fee to be believed around £30,000,000. (source of fee- Soccerbase)
The Spaniard had the chance to make it a dream send off in the 30th minute of today’s game from the penalty spot, however Luke Steele easily saved a rather tame and stuttery effort which unfortunately did not fool Steele in the Forest goal.
The only other noticeable contribution from the Spaniard in today’s game came in the second half when his pile driver from long-range flew just over Steele’s bar in the Forest goal.
As the game neared to the end, Fabregas looked very tired and had to be substituted for Ngolo Kante in the 85th minute, after suffering cramp late on in the match. The Spaniard received a standing ovation from the Stamford Bridge faithful.
Cesc also received a warm embrace from Maurizio Sarri after he was substituted. The Italian coach will be disappointed to let go one of his creative midfielders, but he will hope that the club will have a replacement lined up for him. Reports came out today that Chelsea have submitted a €45,000,000 bid for Cagliari midfielder Nicolo Barella.
So the club are actively searching for a Cesc replacement. News came out today from Matt Law that Chelsea have made Barella and Higuain the two main transfer targets for the remainder of this window.
(Photo Credit/Source- The London Evening Standard)
After the match finished, Fabregas conducted a lap of honour around the Stamford Bridge pitch, to which tears were shared as he graced the pitch one last time before heading down the tunnel.
Fabregas didn’t have his dream send off today. Nevertheless, he will go down as a great midfield maestro in Chelsea’s history.
Fabregas’s Chelsea career summed up nicely on Twitter by @cfc_wale
Looking into his honours that he won with the Blues; his first Premier League title came in his debut season with Chelsea in the 2014/15 season under Jose Mourinho. Him and Diego Costa were vital to helping Chelsea win the League in that season.
He also won the League Cup under Mourinho in the same season after beating Tottenham 2-0 at Wembley in the final. The Spaniard gained an assist for Diego Costa’s second goal to help seal the League Cup for Chelsea that season.
He was then vital in Chelsea winning the title under Conte in his first season (2016/17). Cesc was also part of the Chelsea squad that won the FA Cup last season under Conte.
If we look at his overall statistics in English football, today’s game was his 501st appearance in English football. In terms of his Premier League records with Arsenal and Chelsea combined, in 350 appearances, Cesc scored 50 goals and has gained 111 assists.
English Football waves farewell to Cesc…
So as Cesc looks very likely to leave for Monaco, Chelsea and the Premier League will be losing one of the greatest midfield maestros that has ever graced the League.
The deal isn’t fully completed yet according to Liam Twomey of ESPN. But it is looking likely that Cesc will be leaving Chelsea soon once they find a replacement.
The Spaniard looks likely to reunite with Thierry Henry at Monaco. All that is left to say is goodbye Cesc and good luck for the future.
Gary Lineker also paid a farewell tribute to Cesc on Twitter (@GaryLineker official Twitter account)
Also remember to check out @terrysazio Match Report for today’s game on Twitter for the @Chelseaecho.
By Danyal Khan