Would Cesc Be Welcomed Back?
Or perhaps more pertinently, should he be welcomed back? In the aftermath of Bayern Munich’s lethal and clinical 7-0 demolition of Barcelona in the Champions League semi-final, Arsenal fans have started whispering about the possibility of former captain Cesc Fabregas returning to the club that shaped him in to the player he has become. Fabregas left Arsenal in August 2011 in a move that resulted in a transfer fee of close to £25m. A life-long Barcelona fan, there was a tedious inevitability to this transfer saga. However, since the dream move things haven’t been as idyllic as Fabregas might have expected.
Between 2009 and 2011, Barcelona retained an almost impervious reputation as one of the greatest club teams of all time. However, the last two years have seen a rebalancing of the power and Barcelona no longer strike that same fear in to their opponents. It is this relative fall from grace that has given optimistic Gooners hope that the prodigal son might return. However, not everyone would be so eager to see Fabregas return.
It is often said that Arsenal owed Fabregas for his service over the years, but this notion is entirely misguided. Cesc Fabregas became the player that he is today precisely because of the faith placed in him by Arsenal. At 19, Fabregas was trusted as a first team player at the heart of the Arsenal midfield. Over the following years, he developed and blossomed. He gained incredible experience at a very young age, and his mistakes were all accepted as part of the learning curve. There are a handful of clubs in world football that would have invested the time and placed such trust in such a young player. When Fabregas finally left Arsenal, it was in one of the most protracted and drawn-out transfer sagas in recent memory. Arsenal could not get a fair market value for their player as Fabregas would only consider Barcelona, and the inevitable delays associated with this prevented the club from doing their business early in the window.
It is quite apparent that Fabregas still has a soft spot for Arsenal – he regularly tweets about them. However, somewhere along the way the narrative of the relationship has changed. Fabregas has a hell of a lot to thank Arsenal, and Wenger, for. Arsenal does not now, nor did it ever, owe Fabregas anything.
Would he welcomed back? Absolutely – with open arms. Fabregas is a wonderful player, and he was tremendous for Arsenal. That being said, we need to get past the fairy-tale.
There are exciting new chapters to be written at Arsenal – let’s not dwell on revising the old ones.