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Cesc Fabregas talks Messi, Xavi, Pedri, Gavi, Barcelona exit, Negreira scandal

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Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images

Cesc Fabregas will always go down as one of FC Barcelona’s finest players. The Spanish midfielder wove magic in the Catalan midfield for close to three seasons and was one of the team’s most impactful players off the bench.

During his time in Catalonia, Fabregas won La Liga, the Copa del Rey and the Spanish Super Cup domestically and the UEFA Super Cup at the European level.

The former Barcelona player spoke to El Larguero earlier this week about a plethora of topics, many of which were related to Barcelona. Here are the snippets from his interview.

On the Negreira scandal: “I’ve never heard anything like that when I was there, but I think we players don’t have to get into it because that’s something that’s far above us. I can’t tell you much because I don’t know how the story is going, but as a soccer player I can tell you that it was a surprise for me.”

On referees denying Barcelona the league title: “I never received any arbitration report, but I can say that they took away a league against Atlético de Madrid, which was in the play and they annulled a goal that was legal.”

On the recent FIFA The Best award: “Everything is very complex in these awards. Mbappé is very talented, and Benzema made one of the best Champions in history. Leo, for his part, did well in Paris and then did what he did in the World Cup, which has a lot of weight. If a player wins it for his performance in the World Cup, it is deserved.”

On Lionel Messi: “Sentimentally, he will always be a Barça player. I don’t know what his future will be, but I’m sure he’s going to fight to compete at the top”

On Messi’s possible return: “I hope Messi returns to Barcelona, but these are very personal decisions.”

On Aurelien Tchouameni: “I advised Barcelona to sign Tchouameni from Monaco, but they couldn’t afford him.”

On his departure from Catalonia: “After the LaLiga decisive match against Atletico Madrid, from the reactions that were there I decided to leave Barcelona at the time, it would have been the same decision even if we won the LaLiga.”

On Xavi’s Barcelona: “I like it. You can see things that you haven’t seen in years. I think he will say that there are things to improve, but I think there is already a lot of improvement. The Europa League is a stick that makes you see that you are not at that European level, although you see that you compete better and better.”

On the expectations from Barcelona: “If they win the league this year, it will be a big step forward. Of course, next year will no longer work with that alone.”

On Pedri and Gavi being likened to Xavi and Iniesta: “The pressure is on them, because they play very well. They play well, and the pressure always comes. I can’t deny that you get your wires crossed dreaming of them forming that Iniesta-Xavi duo, that’s something that’s in the minds of the Barcelona fans.

“They are young, but they already have experience, so why not put more pressure on them? I don’t think they’ll even notice it.

On being asked to choose between Xavi-Iniesta-Busquets and Modric-Casemiro-Kroos: “It is very difficult to choose one of those midfields. They have their differences because I think Madrid expected more and Barça was looking for control with the ball.

Even so, everyone has been able to adapt to what the game demanded. It’s hard for me to choose, but I think I’m going to go with Barcelona. Even so, how can you tell these guys who have won so many Champions League titles that you can’t take them. They are spectacular, they make the question very difficult”.

On Vinicius Jr’s situation: “Vinicius is a bit of everything. If I had been a full-back, I would have tried to cover him as best I could, even doing things I don’t do with others because he’s better. You have to try to take him out of the game, because he’s very good.”

On his advice to the young Brazilian: “He is a very young boy, you also have to take it into account. If you control this well, it can be unstoppable like Ronaldinho or Neymar was.”

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