Fabregas back to his best as top four place is secured
Cesc Fabregas scored a goal in each half to finally secure a top four finish for Arsenal – and leave manager Arsene Wenger lavishing more praise on his returning captain. The Spaniard started and finished off a flowing move to drill home the opener from A
Cesc Fabregas scored a goal in each half to finally secure a top four finish for Arsenal - and leave manager Arsene Wenger lavishing more praise on his returning captain.
The Spaniard started and finished off a flowing move to drill home the opener from Andrei Arshavin's pullback on 26 minutes, his first league goal since October 4, as Arsenal dominated a Middlesbrough side heading for a tenth successive away league loss.
'Boro briefly threatened when they were denied a penalty after Stewart Downing sent over a corner and the ball appeared to hit Nicklas Bendtner on his upper arm.
Referee Chris Foy waved play on - much to the Middlesbrough players fury.
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But Arsenal were always the more likely scorers and a second goal game halfway through the second half when Fabregas latched on to Emmanuel Eboue's through ball and he rounded Boro 'keeper Brad Jones before steering the ball home.
Abou Diaby could have added a third but shot into the side-netting as Arsenal extended their unbeaten league run to 20 matches.
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"He (Fabregas) gets sharper and sharper in every game," said Wenger, who deliberately played his captain in a more forward position on his seventh game since returning from injury.
"He was out for three months and you don't come back at your best straight away. But now he gets better in every game. Every player who plays in midfield, who thinks they are creative and offensive, needs to score goals. That happened to him today..."
And with fourth place, at least, in the bag, the manager set his sights on those above him. "We want to catch Chelsea and we will give absolutely everything in the last four games. We play Chelsea at home so you never know."