Cesc Fabregas has described Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger as a “special man” who “changed English football”.
Cesc Fabregas moved to the North London club from Barcelona as a teenager, going on to play more than 200 games for Arsenal and taking the captain’s armband in 2008.
Fabregas, who went on to rejoin the Blaugrana in 2011 before moving to Chelsea three years later, was eager to pay tribute to Arsene Wenger, who will leave the Emirates Stadium at the end of the season.
“He’s a special man and a special person – full of class, full of integrity and I really wish him all the best,” the 31-year-old told Sky Sports News. “Football and myself will miss him so much. It was a sad day when I heard.
“Arsene Wenger changed English football. I remember when I was little, you watch any Premier League game and you really only saw long balls and a lot of headers and tackles. But then you see Manchester United and Arsenal play and it’s like you are watching another sport – and Arsene has so much to do with it.
“His philosophy has always been to play beautiful football, take youngsters to another level, bring them up to higher standards and always make them believe they can achieve. I can name you so many young players that nobody else in the world believed in, but he did. Then they became world class and they won everything in the game.”