Cesc Fabregas has been a key player since his move from Barcelona to Chelsea, and he’s a huge part of the reasons why Chelsea were crowned league champions at the end of the 2014/2015 season.
However, the emergence of Antonio Conte as the new Chelsea boss hasn’t spelled well for the Blues. The 29-year-old has been an outcast in the Chelsea team of recent, and the game against Manchester City was his second Premier League start this season; it only shows how terrible things have been for the Spaniard.
With Nemanja Matic injured, Cesc Fabregas was given a chance against Manchester City — a huge game that Chelsea couldn’t afford to lose. Chelsea won that game 3-1, and the big question to ask is: Did Fabregas do enough to get back into the starting 11? Chelsea plays a 3-4-3 system, which allows space for only two central midfielders — meaning Fabregas has to replace N’Golo Kante or Nemanja Matic in that role. Of course, Kante is irreplaceable, but did Fabregas show enough to rub Matic of his starting role?
In all honesty, Fabregas had a good game, but not enough to replace Matic. The game against Manchester City was played with high intensity, and it ran through Fabregas at many points — something that wouldn’t happen with a Matic that has been in incredible form this season. Fabregas’ worth was only shown when Chelsea had the ball, as his passing was excellent — something Matic won’t offer, despite having 6 assists already this season.
The game against Manchester City showed the two sides of Fabregas; with our team’s back against the wall, he was missing. But then, his balls from deep caused a lot of problems for Manchester City, and of course, Diego Costa would always relish to have Fabregas in the team. The partnership between the pair was a major reason Chelsea ended up as champions two seasons ago.
While Fabregas can’t replace Matic in the starting lineup, he can still be an asset in this team. No Chelsea player is half as good on the ball as Cesc Fabregas, and he can offer something different for the team. There are games where we might need his craft to unlock stubborn defences, and if we must be champions this season, we must be willing to do that.
Fabregas might not have shown enough to replace Matic, but he has shown that he can offer something different to the team, and shouldn’t be an outcast in this Chelsea side anymore.