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Cesc Fabregas hits back at Neil Warnock over “lucky” Cesar Azpilicueta criticism



Cesc Fabregas has jumped to Cesar Azpilicueta’s defence after veteran manager Neil Warnock said the Chelsea captain had been “fortunate” to win so many trophies with the club.

Azpilicueta helped Thomas Tuchel’s side add to their trophy collection by beating Palmeiras 2-1 to win the Club World Cup on Saturday.

The 32-year-old is widely regarded as a club legend at Chelsea, for whom he has made 459 appearances since joining from Marseille for around £7million in 2012.

He has now won two Premier League titles, the Champions League, the FA Cup, the League Cup, two Europa League titles, the Club World Cup, and the UEFA Super Cup in 10 seasons with the club.

Azpilicueta, who has captained the Blues since 2019, is out of contract with Chelsea in July and has been linked with a move to Barcelona on a free transfer.

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The Spanish international has unselfishly played right across the defence for Chelsea during his time at the club, but Warnock has dismissed his credentials.

“I think it goes two ways to be honest. I think Azpilicueta has been a very fortunate lad to be at a club like Chelsea,” the 73-year-old manager said on talkSPORT.

“I don’t think he is a great defender. Sometimes in football you need a bit of luck and I think he’s had a bit of luck at the right time and in the right place.

“That’s what you need in football, you need a bit of luck to be successful.”

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Warnock’s controversial take has been rubbished by former Chelsea midfielder Fabregas, who has played alongside Azpilicueta for club and country.

Replying to the clip on Twitter, Fabregas simply posted three emojis : a face-palm, monkey covering its eyes and a confused face.

Azpilicueta has 36 caps for Spain and recently passed 450 appearances for Chelsea, a tally which puts him seventh on the club’s list of all-time appearance-makers.

Of modern-day players, only Frank Lampard, John Terry and Petr Cech have played more often for Chelsea than the defender.

“To be on that list is a privilege and I feel really proud of that,” Azpilicueta told the club website .

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“From when I started playing here, I was lucky to have the confidence of the club and every manager, and my team-mates.

“So I’ve been playing a lot and every time I wear the blue shirt I feel very proud to share all our moments with the fans.”

Like Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger, Azpilicueta is out of contract in the summer, but has refused to discuss his future.

“I will not talk about my future,” he said firmly during the press conference.

“Of course, I arrived in the summer of 2012 and I had no children. My children were born in London and you know how I feel about Chelsea, but I won’t comment on my future.”


Report: Chelsea agree personal terms with Inter Milan superstar




Chelsea look to be closing in on the signing of 19-year-old midfielder Cesare Casadei.

The Blues are reportedly agreeing personal terms with the Inter Milan youngster ahead of what is expected to be a €15m (plus add-ons) transfer. Inter had been looking for around €20m all told.

As per Fabrizio Romano, and others, the highly promising Italy youth international, though who has yet to make his senior professional debut, has agreed a six-year deal with the Blues, choosing Chelsea over the likes of OGC Nice in France and US Sassuolo in Italy.

Presumably, Casadei will not be joining the Chelsea first-team right away, though post-Brexit work permit rules are fairly esoteric and confusing.

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Perhaps he will end up joining one of the aforementioned teams on loan to build up the necessary professional experience? Just speculating…

See also  Thomas Tuchel ‘surprised’ by Pep Guardiola decision after Chelsea beat Man City in Champions League final

While the two teams have yet to agree a transfer, this looks to be drawing to a successful conclusion for us, adding yet another teenager talent to the team as we look to build for not only this season but for many seasons in the future.

See also  Saul Niguez names the two players who have surprised him most in Chelsea training
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Mikel Arteta drops Youri Tielemans hint as Arsenal can sign ‘more complete’ N’Golo Kante




Today’s Arsenal transfer round-up on Tuesday, August 16.

Tielemans hint

Mikel Arteta’s increased use of Granit Xhaka could mean that Arsenal are close to giving up on transfer target Youri Tielemans.

The Gunners are still chasing a deal for the Leicester City midfielder but have seen their chances dwindle of doing a deal this summer and now, despite Xhaka previously saying he had come close to leaving, the club could have to do without a new addition.

Xhaka is now part of a new leadership group at the Emirates Stadium, a possible indication that he may remain at the club and throw a move for Tielemans into doubt.

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Kante replacement

With Tielemans becoming less and less attainable this season, Arsenal have reportedly turned their attention elsewhere.

According to the Express, Brighton midfielder Moises Caicedo is attracting interest from some of Europe’s top clubs including the Gunners and Manchester United. Having been previously compared with Kante, Arsenal’s desire to sign Caicedo is understandable.

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South American football expert Tim Vickery said, “A year ago he was saying that Kante of Chelsea is his role model but he is already more than that. He already offers more in the final third.”

Yeremi Pino flight explained

Transfer guru Fabrizio Romano has cleared the air regarding Yeremi Pino and denies that a bid has been made for him.

Romano told CaughtOffside, “Many clubs have been following Yeremi Pino for months, he is a top player of the future that at least three Premier League clubs have been monitoring for some time.

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“No proposals have been made yet to Villarreal, who would like more than €50m for their young star; it will not be an easy negotiation.

“As for the rumours about Arsenal – Edu was not travelling to Spain to meet Villarreal, also because Pino’s agents are based in the UK (Stellar Group).”

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Erik Ten Hag believes £64,000 a week player will agree to join Man United – Report




Despite signing two defenders this summer, Manchester United’s backline has been terrible this season and yet another defender is linked with a move to Old Trafford.

Yesterday, we covered a story (via Sport) claiming that the Red Devils have submitted an offer to sign Sergino Dest, who has received a clear message to leave Barcelona.

Today, the Spanish news source have covered another report and stated that the American international has not been able to impress in the last two years, moreover, he failed to convince Xavi in pre-season. Therefore, his exit is considered essential.

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Erik ten Hag wants to get rid of Aaron Wan-Bissaka this summer so that he can complete the signing of Dest, who is valued at 20 million euros.

The Catalan media outlet claim the Dutch manager believes that the 21-year-old Barca defender will agree (say Yes) to join Man United.

See also  Chelsea target 'furious' over failed Blues transfer and is ignoring his current club phone calls

Ten Hag really needs to understand that players from the Netherlands or connections with Ajax are not guaranteed to solve the conundrum at Old Trafford.

Under Van Gaal, Depay and Blind failed to shine for Man United. For Ten Hag, thus far, the likes of Eriksen, Martinez and Malacia have not settled.

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Now, he is pushing to sign another ex Ajax player in the form of Dest. The American was a hit in the Eredivisie but has proved to be average in the La Liga.

The youngster’s current contract at the Nou Camp will expire in 2025 and he earns around £64,000 a week (The Sun).

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