By 90Min
July 19, 2017

​Chelsea boss Antonio Conte has encouraged Cesc Fabregas to remain at the club, promising him more regular football next season.

The Spanish playmaker made just 18 starts during the last campaign, and did not feature in the Premier League for two months after Chelsea's 3-0 defeat to Arsenal in September.

The 30 year-old's future has been cast into further doubt by Chelsea's £40m acquisition of 22-year-old powerhouse Tiemoue Bakayoko from Monaco, who seems a suitable partner for N'Golo Kante in central midfield.

However, Standard Sport understands that Conte has met with Fabregas to reassure him of his position in the side. 

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 08: Cesc Fabregas of Chelsea during the Premier League match between Chelsea and Middlesbrough at Stamford Bridge on May 8, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)
Michael Steele/GettyImages

He is believed to have admitted to the Spaniard that he should have featured more regularly in Chelsea's title-winning campaign; despite playing a bit-part role at times, the former Arsenal and Barcelona star racked up seven goals and 13 assists in all competitions.

Fabregas confessed on multiple occasions last season that he was unhappy with his lack of playing time, leading to speculation about a move away from Stamford Bridge, with AC Milan amongst his potential suitors.

Chelsea's Italian head coach Antonio Conte reacts on the pitch after their defeat to Arsenal after the English FA Cup final football match between Arsenal and Chelsea at Wembley stadium in London on May 27, 2017. Aaron Ramsey scored a 79th-minute header to earn Arsenal a stunning 2-1 win over Double-chasing Chelsea on Saturday and deliver embattled manager Arsene Wenger a record seventh FA Cup. / AFP PHOTO / Adrian DENNIS / NOT FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING USE / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE (Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images)

Chelsea are already in danger of being a little short in midfield: Nathaniel Chalobah has already been sold to Watford for £5.5m, and Nemanja Matic looks set to follow him out the exit door.

Especially with a return to the Champions League looming, this makes it even more important for Conte to hold on to one of his most experienced squad members.

Fabregas impressed in Chelsea's first pre-season friendly, starting alongside Kante in an 8-2 victory over Fulham at the club's training ground. 


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