Cesc Fabregas, football’s best 12th man, reinvented himself as an impact player off the bench, finding ways to contribute even as everyone expected him to fail to rise to Antonio Conte’s exacting demands.
Through hard work and dedication, Cesc earned not only Conte’s praise but also a chance to win his second Premier League trophy in three years. Though Cesc has only played 1137 minutes across 11 starts and 15 substitute appearaances in the league this season, he’s still managed to record 4 goals and 11 assists, the latter of which is the fourth highest total in the Premier League.
"It's been different year for me. I'm used to playing every single game, week-in, week-out for every club I've been at but I feel I've matured a lot this year. It's not easy what happened to me - many people told me I'm not the type of player for Antonio, told me I should leave but I like challenges and this was a big challenge."
"Obviously I haven't played every single game but the last 20 or so games I have played, of course not from the start. But I feel the quality of my minutes whenever I've been on the pitch have been fantastic, so maybe my contribution has been even bigger than when I've played more in other seasons."
"I've had to have patience and accept that sometimes these thing happen. Play for the team. It's a different season for me but I'm proud of what I've done."
To clinch the Premier League title, Chelsea need only to beat West Bromwich Albion on Friday night at the Hawthorns. And while there are easier games left this season, with two home matches in the final two matchdays against Watford and Sunderland, for Cesc (and his teammates), there is no time to waste.
"We want to get it done on Friday. I have experience in winning titles and the quicker you can get it done the better."
"Trust me, you don't want to give opportunities to anyone. We will not wait so if it can happen on Friday let it be. Then we can focus on the FA Cup. But Friday is a final for us."
-Cesc Fàbregas; source: ESPN FC
In less than 24 hours, Chelsea could be Champions of England once again. We could not have done it without the former Barcelona and Arsenal star, who’s become one of Chelsea’s most important players over the past three seasons.