Cesc Fabregas has joined Serie B side Como on a free transfer, with the club confirming his arrival on Monday. The midfielder left Monaco at the end of last season, and will now continue his career in Italy in a deal that also sees him become a shareholder of the club.
Fabregas, 35, moved to Monaco from Chelsea in 2019 and made 68 appearances for the French club in all competitions. However, he was limited to just two matches in Ligue 1 last season because of injuries.
What's been said?
While unveiling the club's newest signing, Como CEO Dennis Wise, the former Chelsea captain, confirmed that Fabregas will become a shareholder.
“I think it will be an excellent deal," Wise said. "He has decided to marry this project for the next two years and we are very happy with this choice.
"I would like to thank his attorney Darren and his wife Daniela for convincing him to accept the Como proposal.
"He will become a shareholder of the company, he came here for that too. He will be here longer than expected, he wanted to join the club for our ambitions: to fix the stadium, open a new sports center and get to Serie A."
Fabregas, meanwhile, said that his ambition is to now bring the club to Serie A.
"First of all, I would like to thank the club for believing in me and my family, who have always been willing to follow me in my career," the midfielder said.
"I came here to play in the best possible way and win as many games as possible . This is my priority. If I felt that it was no longer this, I would hang up my boots.
"I want to bring Como back to where it deserves to be: in Serie A. I know the club wants to be competitive, it has shown ambition since the first day."
What do we know about Fabregas' move to Como?
The Spain international described the 2021-22 campaign as “not only the worst year of my career but the worst year of my life" and rumours circulated that he could retire from the game.
But Fabregas has opted to continue his career in Italy by linking up with the second-tier side in Lombardy.
The former Barcelona player landed in Italy on Monday to undergo a medical and sign the deal with the club - who posted a video of his arrival on their official Twitter account.
Como were promoted to Serie B in 2020-21 and finished 13th in the division last season.
At his unveiling, Fabregas confirmed that he turned down proposals from MLS as he saw Como as the more attractive option.
"MLS? I've never thought about it," he said. "I think the Como project is better from all points of view."
He continued: "I decided to come here for many reasons. I had the opportunity to speak with Dennis. I had actually been in this situation for two months. I just wanted to join a project that excited me, I didn't care about the money.
"Dennis was the most convincing, I see a long-term future for this club. "
Fabregas' career journey
Fabregas began his career in Barcelona's famed La Masia academy before joining Arsenal in 2003, and became a crucial player for the Gunners as they won the FA Cup and reached the Champions League final.
He left to return to Barcelona in 2011 and went on to feature 151 times to claim a La Liga title, among other domestic honours.
Chelsea then lured him back to the Premier League in 2014, where he lifted the title twice, along with the FA Cup and the Europa League before leaving for Monaco in January 2019.