Antonio Conte’s Chelsea tenure got off to a good start last night, but his squad selection raised some eyebrows.
Cesc Fabregas was left on the bench throughout, with even Victor Moses getting a run out ahead of the Spaniard when Chelsea were chasing a winner – which was duly claimed by Diego Costa.
And, according to The Telegraph, that’s because Conte doesn’t see the former Barcelona man as part of his plans for the season, and has offered him to a host of top clubs around Europe.
Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus have all been notified of Fabregas’ availability, as Conte seems happy to pair new signing N’Golo Kante with Nemanja Matic in the Blues’ midfield.
Matic himself has been heavily linked with a move to Juventus – as a replacement for Paul Pogba – but Fabregas looks closer to the exit door after last night’s ommission, and could fill the void left by the world’s most expensive player in Turin.
Fabregas enjoyed a brilliant first season back at Chelsea under Jose Mourinho in 2014, but has since fallen from grace in dramatic fashion.
He’s now 29, and doesn’t seem to fit in with Conte’s preference for energetic, combative midfielders. Kante will be a regular feature in the Chelsea midfield, and with Matic and Oscar getting picked ahead of him in the season opener, Fabregas could be set for an.
Conte himself has insisted he ‘doesn’t see any problem’ with the midfielder, but that won’t stop the rumours flying and a possible exit being talked about.