by Manjunathan S
This post is my cheeky take on the Cesc Fabregas situation. For the past one week, rumor mills and gossip-mongers are working overtime proclaiming that Cesc Fabregas’ love affair with Barcelona may be, MAY BE all but over and a return to Arsenal is on the cards. Remember rumors are like grey hairs on your head, it only spreads; ask George Clooney if I’m wrong and the spreading rate is greater than the news of Aishwarya Rai becoming a mommy. I hear stories like…Cesc Fabregas on his way to Arsenal? Tito Vilanova (manager of Barcelona) cannot find a place for Cesc in his team… Fabregas frustrated with life as a benchwarmer in Barcelona and …blah blah blah. Personally I don’t pay much heed to all such stories, but, I was squeezed into writing on this subject after I read Fabregas’ interview with Radio Marca. We shall delve into this interview a little later in the post after a very brief introduction to Cesc Fabregas and his protracted transfer to FC Barcelona from Arsenal FC; and this is for all those who are new to following football and my non-football following friends. And those who are already familiar with it read it again.
Cesc Fabregas, born May 4, 1987 (age 25) is a professional footballer who has made 70 appearances for the Spanish national team and plays for FC Barcelona as a midfielder. Although his primary position is a central midfielder he has occasionally played as a False 9 (second striker) or as a winger. He was supposedly “poached” (the term often used instead of ‘signed’ by those who envy the manager of Arsenal, Arsene Wenger) by Arsenal FC in September 2003 from FC Barcelona at the age of 16. It was at Arsenal where he established himself as the best midfielder of his generation. He then caught the prying eyes of Barcelona who upon seeing their former youth product reach new heights started tapping him up on the pre-text that he has their DNA. And just as your head and eyeballs move in tandem when you see a curvy-sexy girl passing before you, the lure of playing for Barcelona was so flattering that he began to think the princess of Spain is prettier than that of England.
So it began; the most drawn out transfer saga in the history of Arsenal. While the transfer saga was longer than Usain Bolt’s legs, one would expect the transfer fee to be at least as big as, if not bigger than Kim Kardashian’s booty. But we settled for her sister’s; if you know what I mean. Yes, we put a £40 (€51) million valuation on him, and wanted to suck every penny of his valuation from Barca; but they ended up being the biggest suckers (pun intended) by snaring the best player at the club and begging to pay just €35m; that too on EMI. Though Cesc conducted himself in a gentlemanly manner amidst all this brouhaha it was clear that he desperately wanted to return to Barca and did so in the summer of 2011. Their (re)union was similar to a prodigal son meeting his mother long after he was lost as a kid in Kumbh mela. Dream debut as they say awaited him as he won the Supercup (although nothing super in that except the name). And as if it was not enough, chaddi-buddies Messi and Cesc re-kindled their teenage chemistry almost instantly and both lit up the La-Liga scoring goals as well as assisting each others’ goals. I wondered if this is what they called heydays.
Fast forward a year and bright days soon became bleak, his form dipped that cost his place in the team and soon the same people who cheered him started jeering at him. Perhaps he must have now understood that people help in undressing each other when they are in an urgency, but once the task is complete they should dress up themselves; no one will help then. He knows that a player of his caliber should not be rotting on the bench and has now come out and expressed his frustration at the lack of playing time. Here is what he apparently told Radio Marca in his interview:
‘There’s no such thing as a great substitute in the world of football.
‘I couldn’t tell you what makes a great substitute.
‘I always wish my team-mates well and put a happy face on.
‘If I have to take my unhappy face home then so be it, but I would never let my team-mates or manager see it.’
‘Everybody likes to play every minute of the season,’ he added.
‘I’ve always said that I play for the best team in the world, but I came here to compete, to learn and enjoy, not to sit wracking my brains.
‘The manager knows what I can offer. But across the three positions that I can play, I am competing with the three best players in the world.”
‘But I will not make it easy for him to do so, by any means. I will keep going, looking forward to the time that things change.’
‘I came here to see out my career.’
Now Gooners, I know many of you have already rolled out the red carpet to welcome him. As much as you all do, in some corner of my heart even I hope he returns to Arsenal but is that the answer we all are looking for. I am not being a cynic, may be he will return to Arsenal but would you welcome him? Do you think he will walk straight into the current starting eleven? Will you sacrifice the growth of a young prodigy on the cusp of making it big for the sake of proven talent who left us when we were in dire need of him? Would you risk disrupting the harmony and chemistry of the players just when we all think we can move on from the hangover of Cesc and Van Persie? Okay, I understand the squad will become more competitive but should it be at the cost of the reputation of the club? Bringing Fabregas back will send out a message to the players that they can be bigger than the club. Also I would not want the current crop of players’ growth to be hampered. In a midfield considered the best in the Premier league wouldn’t it be an insult to other players performing admirably well to lose their place to someone who re-joined the club after realizing the new pastures were not as rosy as he thought them to be?
Gooners, though this is what I think I would really like to know your views on this subject. We all know he has told that Arsenal is the only club he would play for if not Barcelona but in his last sentence of the interview he has ruled out a move to any other club. In my opinion Hugh Hefner has a better chance of becoming a father than Fabregas signing for Arsenal. I feel we should respect Fabregas and the moments of brilliance he has produced with us but at the same time we should forget about signing him as a player at least for the season and back the current team and The Man – Wenger to fire us to glory.
Please share your views in the comments section. Should we or shouldn’t we activate his buy-back clause if he ever becomes available? Will he be an essential commodity or a liability?
Arsenal Till I Die!! In Wenger We Trust!!