Chelsea finally announced the £27 million signing of Cesc Fabregas on Thursday, leaving many Arsenal fans contemplating just what could have been.
A cult hero in north London, Fabregas led Arsenal for many seasons and with the armband on, he was an inspiration to his team-mates during a fruitful, yet trophyless spell.
Arsene Wenger had the option to buy him back from Barcelona but chose not to exercise it, despite Fabregas suggesting that was his preferred option.
Not all Arsenal fans were left ruing the former Barcelona midfielder's decision to make the switch to West London, though, due to the fact Mesut Ozil is now Wenger's focal point and the former would not fit into the current system ahead of the German.
Were the Gunners faithful who were happy with the decision to miss out on Fabregas right in their thoughts, or were those lambasting Wenger's decision correct?
Fabregas faltered for Barcelona in what was a miserable campaign for the club but the midfield orchestrator still produced some good stats with the Catalan giants. So impressive, in fact, he out-did Arsenal's £42 million signing in many departments.
Fabregas displayed the variety in his all-round game as he boasted a higher Squawka Performance Score (1096) than Arsenal's German talisman (781). Fabregas did, however, benefit from the fact he played 10 games more than Ozil, with the German suffering from injuries towards the back-end of the season.
Ozil displayed his quality going forward and after arriving with the tag of being an assist king, he more than obliged with nine registered in the Premier League game. Fabregas edged him again on that front, but the fact he played far more than Ozil and managed 13 perhaps points to just how efficient Ozil was.
Ozil was just three goals short of Fabregas' tally for the domestic season and with the likes of Lionel Messi and co. in the Spaniard's surroundings, he will be slightly disappointed not to hit further heights.
Ozil created a remarkable 76 chances compared to Fabregas' 58, a stunning tally considering he played just 26 games in the Premier League. Perhaps Olivier Giroud and co. were provided with the right service but failed to put opposition goalkeepers to the sword, otherwise Ozil would surely have had more assists.
Going forward, Fabregas had the higher Squawka Attack Score (640). However, the Spaniard had a pass accuracy of 87%, marginally lower than Ozil's.
The German's elegant strides became a common trait in his game in Spain and he recreated that in north London. His gliding nature enabled him to complete almost double the amount of take-ons Fabregas managed, highlighting just how effective the German maestro was at instigating an attack. A handful for any defender, the former Madrid man shone in that aspect.
His shot accuracy also bettered Fabregas', with Ozil hitting the target 75% of the time, while Fabregas managed a 63% accuracy. Fabregas was a sizable amount cheaper than Mesut Ozil, but the German was still a quality addition.
Having played 10 games fewer than Chelsea's new signing, Ozil seemingly will have fared better if he had played a similar amount of games and while the former Barcelona midfielder would have been a quality acquisition, Ozil may well have had something to say about the starting XI.
- Sports & Recreation
- Cesc Fabregas
- Mesut Ozil