Former Arsenal, Barcelona and Chelsea midfield maestro, Cesc Fabregas has announced his retirement from football at the age of 36.
Fabregas earned 110 caps for Spain in an international career which saw him win back-to-back European Championships and the World Cup in between those feats.
The Spaniard began his career at Barcelona’s La Masia, but made his professional debut for Arsenal at 16 and spent eight seasons in north London before returning to Catalonia.
Having won the FA Cup with the Gunners, Fabregas enjoyed even greater success in Spain as he lifted La Liga, the Copa del Rey, the UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup over a three-year stay.
Fabregas then returned to the Premier League with Chelsea and won the title twice, first under Jose Mourinho and then under Antonio Conte. He also won the FA Cup and League Cup for the Blues.
The midfielder, who spent his final season as a professional footballer with second-tier Italian side Como, wrote on social media, “With great sadness the time has come to hang up my boots.
“I will cherish every moment, from the early days at Barcelona, Arsenal, back at the Blaugrana, Chelsea, Monaco and finally Como. From the World Cup, to the European Championships, victories in England, Spain, winning European trophies: it was a trip I will never forget.
“I’ve had experiences I never thought I’d even come close to in a million years.”
Fabregas will now take up a coaching role with Como.
He added, “I’m not sad, because I’m about to start a new path: coaching the B and Primavera team of Como 1907. A club and a project I couldn’t be more enthusiastic about. This team won my heart from the first minute, we met at the perfect moment in my career. I will give my all in this new adventure.
“So, after 20 incredible years full of sacrifices, joy and passion, the time has come to say thank you again and say hello to the most beautiful sport in the world.
“I loved every minute. Cesc.”