Cesc Fabregas names the four Arsenal players he ‘really likes’

Cesc Fabregas made his Arsenal debut at 16 and became captain at just 21

Cesc Fabregas made his Arsenal debut aged 16 and was captain at just 21 (Picture: Getty)

former Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas has hailed the club’s young stars after their superb season and believes they can lead the team to great things.

The Spaniard named strikers Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli as well as attacking midfielders Martin Odegaard and Emile Smith Rowe as his favourites.

All four players have had brilliant campaigns in the red and white and helped put the Gunners on the verge of qualifying for the Champions League, something they will achieve if they beat Tottenham in Thursday night’s north London derby.

Fabregas was one of Arsenal’s most admired young players and spoke very highly of Mikel Arteta’s current youth in an interview with LondonWorld.

Martin Odegaard is expected to be named Arsenal's new captain aged just 23

Martin Odegaard expected to be named Arsenal’s new captain aged just 23 (Picture: Getty)

He said, “It’s three or four [players] that I really like. I sometimes feel like I’m observing myself when I first started.

“You have guys like Saka, Martinelli, Odegaard, Smith Rowe… it’s great to see.

‘Even [Eddie] Nketiah, who has recently scored goals. Their recent performances will give them confidence.’

Fabregas, 35, is currently retiring from Monaco but will always be remembered as one of the finest midfielders of his generation.

He made his Arsenal debut at 16 and was appointed club captain at just 21, but in his eight years at Highbury and the Emirates he only won the 2005 FA Cup before earning plenty of silver with Barcelona, ​​Chelsea and Spain.

He has high hopes for the vibrant young Gunners team and there are similarities between him and the new generation, with 23-year-old Odegaard expected to be named the club’s new captain in the summer.

“Every young player needs some time to adjust to the really highest level of football and Arsenal gives them opportunities,” added Fabregas.

“This will not only give the squad a lot of value economically, but also in terms of football. Hopefully in a few years we can see the results of that.’

MORE: Cesc Fabregas advises Mikel Arteta on how Arsenal can beat Antonio Conte’s Tottenham in hard-hitting north London derby

MORE: Antonio Conte urges Tottenham fans to create ‘Anfield-like’ atmosphere against Arsenal

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Nate Jones

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