Chelsea's Cesc Fabregas wishes Maurizio Sarri joined team 'a bit earlier'
LONDON -- Cesc Fabregas said he would love to stay at Chelsea beyond this season, while adding he wished Maurizio Sarri had arrived at Stamford Bridge sooner than this year.
The Spaniard was voted man of the match as Chelsea battled to a 1-0 win over Hungarian champions Vidi in the Europa League group stage on Thursday evening, making only his third start of the season at the base of midfield.
"I like it, everything goes through me," Fabregas said. "This is what I like. I feel sensations under Sarri that I never thought I would feel again. To be honest touching the ball 100 times, all the play going through me or Jorginho is a very important role for him, I'm learning it, I'm very passionate about it as it's very interesting.
"The way [Sarri] sees football is something that maybe in the future if I become a coach I think I'll do something very similar to what he does. It's what I like and how I see football. I'm learning a lot from here, it's really interesting how he works and I'm really looking forward to working for a long time with him.
"I wish he came a bit earlier to be honest, it's a little bit late now in my career. Definitely I'm very happy with him."
Chelsea are yet to open talks with Fabregas over an extension to his current contract, which expires next summer, and his future at Stamford Bridge looks more precarious with Jorginho established as Sarri's preferred midfield playmaker.
But despite admitting frustration at his lack of opportunities so far, Fabregas said he is loving life under Sarri and wants to extend his stay at Chelsea if the club are happy to keep him.
"I just came back from a difficult injury, I'm still sometimes feeling it a little bit," Fabregas said. "I felt I could have helped in the West Ham game and Liverpool in different type of things, but the manager tried another option and I respect that.
"It is difficult to be sitting there and not helping the team when you know you could add something. This is part of the game, it's still early for me. For me this is preseason, I've only been with the team for two weeks after seven or eight weeks out so it's just there, it's my second game in this position and I feel really good."
Asked if he would sign a new contract if Chelsea were to offer him one, Fabregas replied: "Yeah I'm very open about it. To be the honest the club has not said anything. At the end of the day I have eight months left and at the moment I'm gone. But I'd love to stay at the club.
"I've been very happy for the last four years and a half, we've had great success, won many things. I think I have a good understanding with the fans and players. I feel I still have a lot of football left in me but it is now up to the club."
At 31, Fabregas still feels like retirement is a long way off. He has been vocal in the past about his desire to move to MLS once his career in Europe is over and reiterated that he does not see himself hanging up his boots at Stamford Bridge.
"No, I don't think so," he said. "Probably in a few years I'd like to go away from Europe and experience something different at the later stage of my career. But for now I still feel really good."