Fabregas: All set for a great stage

Cesc Fabregas has contemplated the significance of tomorrow’s FA Cup semi-final in our season as a whole, and also paid tribute to John Terry following this week’s news the skipper will leave Chelsea.

Fabregas has played in every game of our Cup run so far this season as he seeks to replicate his achievement of more than a decade ago when he won the competition as a 17-year-old.

Victory at Wembley tomorrow would get us a step closer to our first Cup success in five years and the midfielder is confident the Blues can reach the final on 27 May.

‘We need to be positive, we need to stand up and focus on a very important game in a competition we have worked hard on during the season,’ the 29-year-old said.  ‘Now we are so close we want to keep it up and be in the final.

‘I don’t believe the fact Spurs are our title challenges makes a difference. In football every competition is different. You need to focus on different things. You are playing to be in a final, not for three points or one point.

‘There is not really a connection in my mind, and I think my teammates’ mind, between the FA Cup and the league. It’s a big game, a great stage, and hopefully we can go through.

‘I’m sure they believe they can beat us. We believe we can beat them. It’s on the day. Psychologically football can be affected by results sometimes, but I believe every time we have had a bad result this year we bounced back very quickly and that says a lot about the team. Hopefully we can do the same and play a good game on Saturday.’

Fabregas added how pleased he would be for Terry if we could end the campaign, the captain’s last as a player at Stamford Bridge, on a high note.

‘The news did come as a surprise. There was a lot of talk and speculation that it could be his last year but we didn’t know for sure. I think it’s a very personal decision between him and the club. It’s a shame because I cannot see anyone replacing the role he does in the team. He is irreplaceable for now.

‘We will miss him and hopefully we can lift two trophies at the end of the season for him. That would be amazing.’

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Features 20/04/2017