Soccer

Jose Mourinho conversation helped to seal Chelsea transfer despite Arsenal clause

Cesc Fabregas has revealed how he was convinced to join Chelsea by Jose Mourinho despite the pair’s frosty past. Fabregas left boyhood club Barcelona to join Chelsea in 2014 after Arsenal passed up their first-refusal clause to re-sign the midfielder. The Spaniard went on to have four-and-a-half successful years at Stamford Bridge, winning two Premier League titles, an FA Cup and a League Cup.

Fabregas has explained how he and Mourinho never saw eye to eye when they crossed paths in England during his time at Arsenal, or in Spain when he was at Barca.

But Mourinho insisted that was all forgotten about when he attempted to take Fabregas to Chelsea six years ago.

“Mourinho was the one who inspired me the most to leave Barcelona,” Fabregas told Tot Costa.

“He told me that we had our spats on the pitch when he was at Chelsea and I was at Arsenal and then when he was coaching Real Madrid and I was at Barcelona, but that for him it all ended there, and he told me about his project.

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“I prioritised the professional aspect and today I continue to write with him and consider him a friend, he helped me a lot at the time and maybe with him I played one of my best seasons.”

Fabregas had become a fan favourite in an eight-year spell at Arsenal before leaving for Barca in 2011.

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In March this year, he revealed that Arsene Wenger rejected the opportunity to re-sign him despite having first refusal.

Fabregas told Arsecast: “Once I decided to leave (Barcelona), Arsenal had the first option of any other club and I could not speak to any other club for one week to see if Arsenal wanted me or not.

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“Arsene didn’t give an answer, we just had to wait one full week to see if they responded. Definitely this was my first option, in my mind I’m telling everyone I’m going to Arsenal – this is what I want.

“Arsene can see this. I didn’t want to be a beggar, they know the situation, in one week they haven’t said anything, straight away I knew they probably didn’t want me back. They waited the full week without giving me a response.

“After the week I had to take my chance, I had Manchester City, United and then I spoke to Mourinho – which I didn’t think would ever happen.

“To be honest, after I left the room with Mourinho I said ‘that’s it, I don’t need to talk to anyone else, I’m going to Chelsea’.

“What he told me, the team he wanted to make, what he thought of me, how he wanted me to play, this is what I wanted.

“On top of that, it’s London, not Manchester, London was my home.”

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