Chelsea and Spain midfielder Cesc Fabregas talks about Round of 16 clash with Italy and hopes that he can help shift his future manager Antonio Conte’s attention to the Blues sooner rather than later.
In a recent interview with Gazzetta World, Fabregas spoke about his future boss and his side’s chances against Italy on Monday. When asked about his incoming manager, the Spaniard had only good things to say.
On being asked whether he knew Conte prior to the announcement, the 29-year-old claimed that he had watched Conte’s Juventus side win and that he liked them. “I liked his Juventus side and I had watched them win, though I didn’t tune in every week. I’ve watched more of them recently and he’s also done a great job with the national team,” he said.
Fabregas and Conte had interacted after the Azzurri coach was confirmed as Chelsea’s next manager and when questioned about what he could reveal about his conversation with the current Azzurri boss, he said “Very little, but he left a great impression on me. He is a great coach and a winner. He told me what he wants to do at Chelsea but that will remain private.”
Fabregas also insisted that he was really looking forward to working with the former Biaconeri boss and hoped that the 46-year-old would soon be able to focus his attention on Chelsea after their national sides meet for their Round of 16 clash. “I really want to work with him but I want him to focus on Chelsea as quickly as possible. I hope that will start on Tuesday,” said the Spanish midfielder.
8 years ago, Spain met Italy in the semi-final of the Euros, and a 21-year-old Fabregas scored the penalty that took Spain to the final of the European Championships, which they would eventually win.
Since then, Spain enjoyed unprecedented success, winning the World Cup in 2010 and successfully defending their European title by beating Italy 4-0 in the final in 2012.
Speaking about his opponents, he insisted that Italy is always difficult to beat and the games are always evenly balanced. He said, “It’s always tough against Italy. They are competitive and have a lot of experience. They have what it takes to win a tournament. It will be tough to beat them as matches against the Azzurri are always 50-50, aside from the final in 2012.”