Chelsea may have sauntered to the Premier League title under Antonio Conte last season, but Cesc Fabregas still struggled to enjoy it after finding his position in the squad reduced. The Spain international had been a key figure under Jose Mourinho and Guus Hiddink but found himself on the bench after Conte preferred a midfield pairing of N’Golo Kante and Nemanja Matic. He started just 13 Premier League games and appeared from the bench a further 16 times. Although still impressing with five goals and 12 assists, Fabregas admits he found life ‘difficult’ after a surprise demotion.
Fabregas: ‘I’m not going to deny it, it was a difficult season. I came from playing everything with [Jose] Mourinho and [Guus] Hiddink and then suddenly I was not counted on all of the time. Not everyone knows what I went through during those months and there were people who went as far as to say that it was no longer worth it. Only my family knows what I have been through.’