Cesc Fabregas has explained how his first conversation with Jose Mourinho convinced him to make the controversial move to Chelsea.
The Spaniard was a hero at Arsenal, but had left the club to sign for Barcelona before returning to the Premier League to sign for their London rivals Chelsea in 2014.
Fabregas twice won the Premier League title at the Stamford Bridge and the player has lifted the lid on how Mourinho persuaded him to move to Chelsea.
‘Jose has one system but he works on that system very well. He’s got the specific players for the right system,’ Fabregas told Ferdinand speaking on his Youtube channel FIVE.
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‘One day, when I first met him he told me “I need two players, I’m going to sign Diego Costa. If you come to me…”, he drew me the team on paper and said ‘this team is winning the title’.
‘The first day I met him he said “I only need two players: Diego, who is basically signed” and then Thibaut Courtois was coming but if not it was Petr Cech.
‘It’s basically the same. But he said: “you come, we will win the title”.
‘After that, working with him, he’s probably the coach that played with my mind better. He’s a great coach for great players.
‘He plays with the mind. He stimulates you. One day, we were doing very well in the league and he texts to tell you how good you are, how you played so well… [but then] “today you were rubbish”. Like this, he plays with you.’
Fabregas worked under some of the best coaches in football, including Mourinho, Arsene Wenger and Pep Guardiola. Though he said the Frenchman had a key advantage over his direct rivals.
‘I think Arsene Wenger is the best coach for young players, definitely. I cannot see anyone better than him, because he gives opportunities, he teaches you,’ he said.
‘He teaches the young players how to behave and how to play the game. He has a certain ability of how to spend time with players and teach them exactly the way he wants his team to play.
‘And I think in this way a lot of people talk, sometimes a young player doesn’t do well, especially now in football you don’t have patience, the press is on you, the fans are on you, they want to win.
‘But he’s got that patience. You play one bad game, he will give you another opportunity. And another one after.’