Arsenal Transfer News: Arsene Wenger Makes Stubborn Claim over Cesc Fabregas

Nick Akerman@NakermanFeatured ColumnistOctober 13, 2014

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 05:  Cesc Fabregas of Chelsea looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Arsenal at Stamford Bridge on October 4, 2014 in London, England.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Arsene Wenger insists he doesn't regret opting not to sign Cesc Fabregas before the former Arsenal captain headed to Chelsea, despite the fact the Spaniard recently helped the Blues down the Gunners.

Wenger spoke to beIN Sports (via Nick Lustig of the Daily Star), confirming he doesn't wish he had snapped Fabregas up: "I don't regret not taking Cesc because we already had a lot of creative players in our midfield."

Seven games into the Premier League season, Fabregas is top of the assists charts and making Wenger's options appear limited, per The Sun:

The Sun Football ⚽ @TheSunFootball

Cesc Fabregas the same number of PL assists this season (7) as Arsenal's squad combined. http://t.co/C4vdWw73jA http://t.co/MJRswDN0d2

The Spanish midfielder has settled back into English life brilliantly and has stepped up his game since moving from Barcelona. Wenger always had first option on the player, but instead of bringing the Arsenal favourite home, he decided to let him slip to a rival for the measly sum of £27 million.

Fabregas even acknowledged he opted for an Emirates return above all and was the first to suggest the north London side's creative depth kept him from heading back to the club, per Pete Jenson of the Mail Online: "Wenger had my position well covered with Ozil, Santi and Wilshere. It was the position he needed least and so I chose Chelsea even though Arsenal had the first option."

MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM - SEPTEMBER 17:  Arsene Wenger (R) , the Arsenal manager congratulates Cesc Fabregas, following their team's 1-0 victory during the Barclays Premiership match between Manchester United and Arsenal at Old Trafford on September 17
Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Less than two months into the new season, Arsenal trail Jose Mourinho's Blues by nine points, having lost 2-0 to Chelsea before the international break. Fabregas pulled the strings against his former side and curled a terrific pass into the path of Diego Costa, who secured the result. This partnership continues to yield success and is likely to be pivotal in deciding where the Premier League crown ends up.

Meanwhile, Wenger continues to limit the potential of his key players.

Alexis Sanchez is struggling to maintain a place in the first-team line-up, despite his busyness offering Arsenal a unique incisiveness going forward.

Jack Wilshere is constantly shackled in midfield due to the lack of physical presence around him, as Mathieu Flamini struggles to maintain pace now that Mikel Arteta is injured.

Most famously of all, Wenger's misuse of Mesut Ozil has seen the German become something of a scapegoat for any Arsenal loss. The 25-year-old has been constantly pushed out to the flank, despite proving himself to be a world-class playmaker when stationed in the middle.

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 05:  Cesc Fabregas of Chelsea and Alexis Sanchez of Arsenal battle for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Arsenal at Stamford Bridge on October 4, 2014 in London, England.  (Photo by Shaun Botte
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

His lack of pace and defensive qualities are exposed in this role, meaning his contribution has become somewhat anonymous since the turn of the year. Worryingly, Wenger has continued to utilise Ozil wide, despite his match-winning performance through the middle against Aston Villa.

The manager appears unmoved by constant suggestions he is limiting Ozil's effectiveness by placing him in a role which isn't natural to the player. Now injured for three months, reports have begun to circulate suggesting the former Real Madrid star wants to leave, as reported by Rob Shepherd of the Daily Mail.

Ozil showed no signs of being able to adapt to a winger's role during the summer, so Wenger could have foreseen troubles further down the line. Fabregas could have easily slotted in behind the struggling player even if Ozil did play in the No. 10 spot, as the Chelsea man is more than useful at tackling and mopping up.

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 05:  Mesut Oezil of Arsenal is closed down by Cesar Azpilicueta of Chelsea during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Arsenal at Stamford Bridge on October 4, 2014 in London, England.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Considering Flamini's limited presence, one has to wonder whether Cesc could have joined Ozil, Wilshere and Ramsey in a rotational midfield. Flamini is the type of midfielder who can go 90 minutes without offering much in defensive and attacking phases of play, something which is only likely to become more prominent as the 30-year-old's career progresses.

Missing out on Fabregas is a deplorable mistake—especially considering his history and passion for the club—but Wenger continues to amplify his previous wrongs by misusing his current players.

While he doesn't admit regretting Fabregas' Chelsea move in public, there's surely a part of the manager who knows he's missed an excellent opportunity, something which could continue to be rammed down his throat until the Stamford Bridge side inevitably lift this year's trophy, led by Fabregas' quality.


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