In the end, though, the Spaniard became a crucial part of the Blues' title win and in the 2017-18 campaign, Fabregas has made 21 appearances in all competitions, including 12 starts.
Fabregas was not able to break up the midfield partnership of N'Golo Kante and Nemanja Matic last season, with Conte initially plumping for aggression and athleticism over creativity during his premier campaign in England. Now I can say our relationship is fantastic.
"I wasn't playing, I wasn't really part of his (Conte's) initial plans and at that point you can do two things", said Fabregas, speaking on the eve of Chelsea's final Champions League group match with Atletico Madrid. "I would be lying if I said I wasn't anxious". The other is what I did, put your head down and be humble, show him that he's wrong, that he can trust you, that you can play in this time.
He said: 'I also want the referee to learn something, for me, Swansea was wasting time.
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He added: "There are no ill feelings now, I think he's moved on from that and he's just focused on trying to get through what is a tough schedule and try to find some rhythm with the team again". "Also, I am very happy, I am where I want to be and that's all down to belief and trust, and hard work". I understood his philosophies, his methods of training, and I adapted very well.
The three clubs who Chelsea can face in the next round are PSG, Barcelona or Besiktas. I'm where I want to be, enjoying my football, playing week in and week out and I want to enjoy that.
To go with five English teams into the next round, that means the level of the league is very high.
"When the moment comes to talk I'll be here, ready for it".