There have been hot rumours about Cesc Fabregas moving to the Premier League to join Chelsea. It is all the more interesting as Chelsea are rivals of his old club Arsenal, where he had enjoyed a very successful and long spell, even captaining the club at a young age. Probably the above statement is so well known that it feels out of context to even introduce an article with it! But yes, there have been sightings of Fabregas in London and strong solid reports of Wenger not being interested in re-signing the club’s former star. We all know Cesc has a house in London and would be interested in London clubs as his priority especially after refusing Manchester United’s consecutive bids.
The rumours have started more because of Barcelona’s desire to establish a balanced squad and strengthen their engine room, especially because of Xavi’s ageing and Song’s perennial inconsistency. They have reportedly stepped up their interest on Atletico midfielder Koke who can step up to be the hardworking playmaker that they would like to have in their team instead of Cesc, a player whom they were desperate to get back when he was playing at Arsenal.
But when we consider Chelsea, who have always been a team that are more focused on the resilience and directness in attack, it is more of a surprise when they are so heavily linked with a flair play-maker who would probably offer lesser box to box work rate. Yet, this also signals the intent of the Blues to buy a versatile player who would give them control over the game from a deep position. When we look at Chelsea’s last main play-maker, it was Juan Mata, who left the club recently as Jose Mourinho did not have him in his first team plans. It is probably obvious that an advanced playmaker is the one Jose Mourinho won’t look to sign. A player like Oscar, the one who works his socks off, is the type of player Lampard was- Playing behind the striker, yet falling back and making the runs.
Cesc Fabregas can offer both the Lampard role as well as the Oscar role. As we all know, Fabregas is a passer more than a dribbler. So we can wholly expect him to sit alongside Matic, and run the game with his vision. Chelsea have players with enormous energy willing to make runs and run for the team. Cesc will have Hazard, Willian, Oscar, Salah, Schurrle and the strikers Costa (probably) and Torres, whom he now knows in and out by their Spanish connections, would rather fit in easily in the team. Having a resilient attacking midfield filled with super hard-workers like Oscar and Willian, Fabregas would only be required to maintain a central midfield-defensive midfield position and need not even dive into tackles, rather just providing cover for other defending midfielders.
We know, Cesc Fabregas has played in teams that defend as a team, generally with technical players. A team like Chelsea having the league’s best defence and one of the world’s top defensive midfielder playing next to him, Cesc Fabregas’ addition to the team will give them the deep playmaker that this sort of squad requires. Chelsea need someone to run the game for them. Earlier it used to be Makelele, not Lampard, because if we look carefully, Frank Lampard was more of the engine player who would attack and create chances in advanced positions, but it was Claude Makelele who used to sit behind and hold possession as well as distribute it to the attackers and keep Chelsea in control.
As the general conception goes, that Fabregas will be a replacement for Lampard, it would be more accurate to think of Fabregas as some sort of modern replacement for Makelele who’s defensive duties will be majorly carried out by Matic whereas Fabregas would naturally offer more attacking attributes. As for the legendary Frank Lampard’s replacing, which most Chelsea supporters would feel, is impossible. Yet, the closest we can have to Lampard on the pitch would be van Ginkel or Oscar, of course a modern version with better dribbling than shooting.
The final verdict: Yes! An absolutely brilliant signing for the Blues if they do manage to get him, which can help them achieve their title winning dream yet again.