It is understandable that Arsene Wenger was disappointed to lose the Spanish international midfielder from his Arsenal team back in 2011, especially with the rumoured way that Cesc Fabregas left the Frenchman little choice but to sell his star player to La Liga club Barcelona.
But because it was a return to his former club and the one he supported as a buy, Wenger seemed to accept Fabregas’ decision and still kept in contact. And Fabregas always spoke well about his mentor and his time as an Arsenal player, often suggesting that we were the only other club he could see himself playing for.
But since Wenger decided not to exercise the option of first refusal to bring Fabregas back to the Emirates this summer which led to him joining our Premier League rivals Chelsea under Jose Mourinho, the man who has showed Wenger more disrespect than any other, our manager has not taken it well.
As a Daily Star report reveals, Wenger has not spoken to his former player since that move. He even failed to reply to a message of birthday greetings from the Spaniard and neglected to return the gesture. And when speaking ahead of the clash between the sides this Sunday, he could not help himself from alluding to the fact that Fabregas failed to some extent at Barcelona, which is the only reason he is back in England.
Wenger said, “It didn’t go as well as he imagined it.
“I felt that when he goes back to Barcelona he will finish his career there or come back to Arsenal.
“It was the fact that he left Barcelona much earlier than everybody expected. Why? I don’t know. He can explain that much better.
“We were in search of more up front and more defensive opportunities than creative midfielders – we have many.
“Maybe sometimes you get so many messages that you forget some. You cannot reply to everybody. It happens. If I did it, I apologise.
“I don’t see why he should not be happy with Arsenal or with me. The most important thing is that he is happy.
“I think Fabregas will have a great career because he’s a great player. When he looks back at his career he will find that Arsenal and myself had a very positive impact on his career.
“Nobody can dispute that.
“I have no personal animosity against Fabregas. I wish him well. He’s a great player and a person and player I love.
“Once he left us, he left us. We are all professionals and we have to accept that.”
I get the feeling that Wenger does feel badly about the way things have happened though. But I am not sure it is too wise to do anything to wind Fabregas up and make him even more determined to show his class against us. Do you?