Chelsea and former Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas has snubbed ex-Blues boss Jose Mourinho revealing that his bitter rival Arsene Wenger is the most important manager he has worked under during his successful playing career.
Reported in FourFourTwo, as quoted by the Metro, Fabregas stated that he holds the Gunners boss in the highest regard when he reflects back on his career.
The Spaniard is currently playing under new Blues boss Antonio Conte having worked under some of the best managers in football.
Fabregas has learnt from Guardiola as well as the two Premier League managers during spells at Arsenal, Barcelona and Chelsea.
Having spent eight years in North London before returning to his boyhood club in Spain, Fabregas became a household name under Wenger’s stewardship.
“Arsene Wenger was probably the most important because he gave me the real chance, the chance that everyone needs and everyone wants,” said the Spanish international.
“‘After that it’s up to you to prove that they are right, they are wrong, it’s in your hands, but he gave me the chance.”
Having won all the major honours available to him, Fabregas holds Wenger accountable for the success he has enjoyed since breaking through in North London.
“The way he treated me it’s not normal nowadays in football because everything is so fast, everyone is so impatient – you need results now.
“And for that Wenger is a special manager and a special person, and without him I wouldn’t be here right now,” stated Fabregas.
The pair could have been reunited in 2014 when Fabregas left Barcelona, however, it is reported that the Gunners boss turned down the chance to sign the Barca star.
The 29-year-old subsequently signed for Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea and played an instrumental part as the club won their fourth Premier League title.
Fabregas has also been linked with reuniting with Mourinho at his new club Manchester United, despite reports that he was responsible for the Portuguese’s Stamford Bridge exit in December 2015.
The Chelsea star did, however, have words of praise for the new Red Devils boss, despite overlooking his influence.
“Working with Mourinho was fantastic. His passion for football, his character, his ambition to always win every three days is not easy,” he said.
“The way he pushes his players to be better every day is what impresses me the most – it was a really fantastic experience.”