Former World Cup winner Fabregas thinks Bayer Leverkusen vs Roma is a must-watch

Fabregas taking part in Enterprise Rent-A-Player at Westway Sports Centre in London
Fabregas taking part in Enterprise Rent-A-Player at Westway Sports Centre in LondonAFP
Spanish star Cesc Fabregas (36), a world champion and two-time European champion, was invited to comment on the decisive phase of the UEFA Europa League during the UEFA-sponsored Enterprise 'Rent-A-Player' event in London where he featured as a surprise player.

The former midfielder was full of praise for Bayer Leverkusen and his former national team colleague Xabi Alonso, although he recognises that the tie against AS Roma will be tight.

The former Arsenal, Barcelona, Chelsea and Spain star commented on the Europa League semi-final clashes and there's one team that stands out to him. "I think Leverkusen, when you watch them play, they are in a moment where everything they touch converts to gold," Fabregas said.

"They can keep winning, even when they are with 10 men. They have a good mentality. They feel this form, that everything you touch, you know, becomes a goal.

"Or something will ever happen that they will find a way, and this is very important for a team when you are in this moment, these dynamics and I'm sure they will try to practice it until the end of the season and win something important as well, apart from the league."

Bayer Leverkusen are on an incredible run
Bayer Leverkusen are on an incredible runFlashscore

In fact, Bayer Leverkusen are the only European team still unbeaten this season, having won the first German championship in their history, and they can still win the German Cup and the Europa League.

The coach is an old friend of Fabregas'. Xabi Alonso had an excellent career as a player, but it was hard to expect such success as a manager.

"It's always difficult to say, they asked me the same questions sometimes with Lionel Messi. Could you see at 12 years old that Leo Messi was going to be the best player in history? No.

"You can see that they have attributes, you see that they have certain characteristics, you see that his father was a coach, he had some of the best coaches in history coaching him.

"He played for fantastic clubs, he was a great player himself, very intelligent. Very humble. Hard-working. So, he has all the ingredients to make it happen, but it is all up to him, he's a smart guy. He's surrounded, I'm sure, by great people working with him, so well done to him", says Fabregas.

So, unsurprisingly, this will be the big game in the semi-finals. Fabregas believes it'll be a 50-50 game and one he'll be watching on TV, due to AS Roma's growth under new coach Daniele De Rossi: "Roma and Bayer Leverkusen in the semi-final is a very good game. It's very, very tight. It's a 50-50.

"Obviously Bayer Leverkusen, they are doing a fantastic season. Having already won the league, so I think it will be a fantastic tie, because Roma as well, they are growing under the new coach, Daniele De Rossi. It will be interesting, I will be in front of the TV watching it."

Follow the match on Flashscore.

The Italian Serie A has two teams left in the UEFA Europa League after Atalanta sent shockwaves across the continent by eliminating Liverpool, thanks in part to a 3-0 win at Anfield, setting up a semi-final with Ligue 1's Marseille.

"Well, we saw what Atalanta can do, beating Liverpool, 3-0. Believe me, I played many times in that stadium and it's not easy at all. They are a very physical team, they go man to man, the whole pitch, the whole time basically.

"They are very physical, so, it will be hard because Marseille also when they changed coaches, you know they played a different style, so it will be an interesting tie," added Fabregas.

Having played many seasons in the Premier League, Fabregas is surprised that there are no English teams in the semi-finals of the Champions League and the Europa League, but he has no doubts about which is the best league in the world in his opinion: "I just think that by not having English teams in Europe, it's just a coincidence really. It's still the best league in the world, the most competitive one, with the best players, the best coaches, with the best teams.

"For me, it's just a coincidence, sometimes this happens. Also in the Premier League, it's the most intense league in the world physically as well. As I said, more competitive, so it is a possibility that players are a bit more tired when they get to the end of the season, playing in the Premier League. So, it just can happen, but nothing changes in my opinion."

Fabregas' final playing years were spent at Monaco and Como
Fabregas' final playing years were spent at Monaco and ComoFlashscore

Fabregas stunned a five-a-side team at Westway Sports and Fitness Centre, turning up as the Enterprise 'Rent-A-Player' star for West London-based side, 'Scuffed FC'. Talking about the experience, he said: "That was good. I never played with them. They play every Thursday together, so they wanted to prove themselves.

"They know tonight that every time they play on Thursday that they are, you know, doing it for a reason. They played as a team. They communicated well. They have some nice touches, good combinations. So I'm happy overall."

Fabregas is currently an assistant coach at Italian side Como, who are fighting for promotion to Serie A.


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