Cesc Fabregas joins Chelsea: Arsenal turned down option to re-sign midfielder

The 27-year-old joins from Barcelona for a reported £26.6m

Chelsea  have completed the signing of Cesc Fabregas from Barcelona, as the midfielder confirmed that Arsenal turned down the chance to take him back.

The 27-year-old, who is away on World Cup duty with Spain, has joined on a five-year contract and will wear the No 4 shirt at Stamford Bridge.

Arsenal had first option after his 2011 move from the Emirates to the Nou Camp but, when he decided to return to the Premier League, his old club were not interested.

Read more: Fabregas statement in full
Arsenal plan £3.5m Vela buy-back
Wenger in Brazil to check on transfer targets
 

“I do feel that I have unfinished business in the Premier League and now is the right time for me to return,” Fabregas said in a slightly provocative statement. “Yes, everyone knows that Arsenal had the first option to sign me. They decided not to take this option and therefore it wasn’t meant to be. I wish them well.”

Fabregas is Chelsea’s first confirmed summer signing but the deal for Diego Costa from Atletico Madrid is as good as done, as Chelsea respond to a trophy-less season.

With Fabregas and Costa joining January signings Nemanja Matic and Mohamed Salah, Chelsea should be even stronger next season.

“I considered all the other offers very carefully and I firmly believe that Chelsea is the best choice,” Fabregas said, after signing the deal. “They match my footballing ambitions with their hunger and desire to win trophies. They have an amazing squad and an incredible manager. I can’t wait to start playing.”

 

Fabregas’s departure marks the end to a slightly disappointing three-year spell at the Nou Camp. Barça was his first club, which he left for Arsenal at the age of 16 and was always keen to return to. He won the Copa del Rey in 2012 and La Liga in 2013 but his time there coincided with a decline from Pep Guardiola’s side which won the 2009 and 2011 Champions Leagues.

Barcelona are close to signing Sevilla’s Croatian midfielder Ivan Rakitic and may pursue Atletico’s Koke.

“I would like to thank everyone at FC Barcelona where I enjoyed three wonderful years,” Fabregas said. “I will always be proud and honoured that I had a chance to play for such a great team.” With Frank Lampard leaving, the 27-year-old is a natural replacement. He has played behind the striker, but may also play deeper in a 4-2-3-1 alongside Matic. Spain centre-back Gerard Pique was overheard last week saying Fabregas’ fee would be €33m (£26.6m).

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert