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
News
Ben Little, right, is a Labour supporter while Jonathan Rogers supports the Green Party
general election 2015
News
The 91st Hakone Ekiden Qualifier at Showa Kinen Park, Tokyo, 2014
news
Life and Style
Former helicopter pilot Major Tim Peake will become the first UK astronaut in space for over 20 years
food + drinkNothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
News
Kim Wilde began gardening in the 1990s when she moved to the countryside
peopleThe singer is leading an appeal for the charity Thrive, which uses the therapy of horticulture
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Alexis Sanchez celebrates scoring a second for Arsenal against Reading
football
Life and Style
health
Voices
An easy-peel potato; Dave Hax has come up with an ingenious method in food preparation
voicesDave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
News
i100
News
Japan's population is projected to fall dramatically in the next 50 years (Wikimedia)
news
Life and Style
Buyers of secondhand cars are searching out shades last seen in cop show ‘The Sweeney’
motoringFlares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
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

NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own