Fabregas dedicates win to Arsenal
Cesc Fabregas dedicated his World Cup™ triumph to Arsenal - but his future with the north London giants remains unresolved.
Throughout his time in South Africa, speculation has persisted over Fabregas' intentions, with Barcelona hovering in the background waiting to make a bid.
Yet Fabregas has been more concerned with finding his form after breaking his shin on club duty in March.
Prior to the final, he had featured for only 90 minutes in the entire five-week competition.
Finally though, Fabregas' killer touch returned at Soccer City last night, allowing him to set up Andres Iniesta's late extra-time winner that crowned Spain world champions for the first time.
It was fitting Arsene Wenger should be in the stands to watch.
For, after joining Arsenal when he was just 16, Fabregas knows his development into a world-class midfielder is largely thanks to the Frenchman.
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He has just spent the last five weeks sharing a dressing room with Gerard Pique, who has now won both the Champions League and the World Cup since quitting Manchester United and returned to the club he first joined as a junior.
With the Gunners starting pre-season training today, Wenger will be looking for some clarity, even though Fabregas will now embark on a short holiday, probably accompanied by the medal he always felt was destined to come his way.
"I don't think I will ever take it off," he said.
"It was a difficult tournament for me because I didn't play a lot but something inside me kept saying I would get my chance. My family came to support me at the final because they believed it too and thankfully, it went brilliantly."
Yet even in his elation at Spain's first World Cup triumph, Fabregas was aware enough to feel sympathy for a Gunners team-mate, who endured similar injury woe but finished up on the losing side.
As Spain celebrated, Holland seethed at Howard Webb and cried at the pain they were enduring.
Among their number was Robin van Persie.
"The first thing I did was go to Robin," said Fabregas.
"I had to go to there instead of celebrating with my friends because he deserved it as well.
"He was injured for a long time and if it wasn't us that he was playing against I would be on his side.
"Even though I was really happy, I was sad for him.
"I really hope he has his chance again in two or four years. He is a great guy and a great leader."
Fabregas took Van Persie up on his offer to rejoin his team-mates and celebrate the moment.
No country has ever managed three on the trot, which will be Spain's task in two years' time at Euro 2012.
"We have been playing good football since Euro 2008 and felt it was our moment to do it in the World Cup," he said.
"It was a bit like the French side when they did the double. We wanted to be the same - we have a special team and special squad and we had to take our chance.
"We have great players coming through. Spanish football is growing and we have to be proud of it."
Spain have now become the third side - after West Germany and France - to hold both major international tournaments at the same time.