With this dramatic season drawing to a close, current Chelsea captain John Terry has so far not been offered a new deal by the club he’s been at since he was young. A decision which has baffled Chelsea fans as he still one of the divisions most prolific centre backs.
With a new era at Chelsea on the horizon a lack of experience and leadership in the squad has been highlighted by many fans and pundits. With Terry’s contract situation remaining unclear and an extension looking increasingly unlikely is Cesc Fabregas the man too take the armband under incoming boss Antonio Conte?
After receiving a huge amount of criticism after the departure of Jose Mourinho, rumours persisted Fabregas himself, Eden Hazard and Diego Costa were the main men in Mourinho’s undoing. Fabregas and his team mates took huge responsibility for Mourinho’s dismissal. A shocking defence of the title and Fabregas only registered one assist in the league under Mourinho and he was evidently disappointed with his own form.
Guus Hiddink came in and Chelsea went 14 games unbeaten under the Dutchman. Fabregas and the rest of the Chelsea team rectified their early season woes and have now got themselves in a respectable league position after a horrendous start to the season. Fabregas has been at the forefront of the revival and the mid season crisis leading from the front with his experience and his consistency since the turn of the year.
With one assist and no goals in the league under Mourinho Fabregas was enduring a poor season after having a superb one in his debut season. When Hiddink was appointed he earmarked Fabregas as one of his most important and influential players; wanting him coming deep collecting the ball and spraying it all over the pitch. That’s a role he enjoys doing and did on numerous occasions during his time at Arsenal.
An instrumental performance against Crystal Palace in the first game of 2016 kick-started his season and he realised he was crucial in getting Chelsea further in the cup competitions and climbing higher in the league. Fabregas scored his first premier league goal of the season in a thrilling 3-3 draw with Everton and also registered his second assist. His role within the side was ever increasing as injuries to key players ruled them out of important games during the season. A goal against Southampton was followed by a fantastic brace in the London derby at home to West Ham taking his tally to the season to four in the league. But his most impressive attribute in the games was his pass completion rate and chances created for his team mates representing his importance in the side. His defending and tackling has also been ever improved under Hiddink. Fabregas turned in a stunning performance just last weekend against Bournemouth with three wonderful assists. His vision, precision and perfection of the passes were exceptional to say the least. These stats and performances over the past few months have undermined his influence in this Chelsea side.
Fabregas is a huge contender for the next Chelsea captain due to many other players leaving the club in the near future. John Terry seems set to leave but it is important Chelsea keep him around the club because of his passion and desire and most importantly his experience. Branislav Ivanovic the current vice captain has performed poorly this season and is on wrong side of the 30 and will he fit into Conte’s plans?
Rumours have circulated he may be set to leave with Chelsea interested in another defenders. So that leaves Fabregas as the most experienced man in the dressing room, having captained Arsenal at a relatively young age. His passion for Chelsea is unquestionable, after firing home a brace against West Ham he pointed to the badge and really got involved with the crowd getting them roaring on the team. That’s a sign of willingness and commitment to a club and is fantastic to see; fans absolutely love to see it and players ultimately thrive off it.
In a guest appearance on Monday Night Football just last week Fabregas expressed his desire in wanting Leicester to win the league and not Tottenham. A sight which Chelsea fans loved to hear. He also lead from the front in saying he and his team mates let Jose Mourinho down and said that the players relaxed too often and Mourinho also trusted them too much. Real character shown from Fabregas in coming out and admitting everyone let Mourinho down can only help his chances of being a candidate for the next skipper.
Ultimately it’s down to Conte determining whether Fabregas is the right man for the job if John Terry is to leave the club. Fabregas has done his chances no harm in the past months, playing up to his expectations, leading from the front, showing his passion and willingness and ultimately portraying his strong character on and off the field. So Chelsea fans would you like to see Fabregas named as the next Chelsea captain?