Happy at Pep school

I am learning a lot thanks to Guardiola, says Cesc

Last Updated: 07/03/12 8:27am

Cesc Fabregas says Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola has taken his football education to a whole new level.

"I am very happy with how things are going, especially with him. I have a very good relationship - he's just very demanding with everyone and I like that very much."

Cesc Fabregas

Quotes of the week

In the second part of our exclusive interview, Fabregas told Revista de la Liga that he finally feels he is settling into the team after an uncertain start to life at the Nou Camp.

Former Arsenal skipper Fabregas moved to La Liga last August and admits that Guardiola's high standards complement his own desire to improve as a player.

"[Guardiola] just wanted to take the best out of me," reflected the 24-year-old midfielder.

"He still has a lot to do, I think! I want to become a better player every day but thanks to him I am learning a lot - things that I never thought about in football, he is teaching them to me. Things I didn't know you had to train them and still he makes you train them and learn and believe in yourself.

"I am very happy with how things are going, especially with him. I have a very good relationship - he's just very demanding with everyone and I like that very much.

"At the beginning it was difficult because, as I said, I was going forward and I was caught out of position many times and I knew I had to learn but now in the last three or four games I've felt so much better already.

"Maybe some people will not see it but before if I saw Dani Alves and Alexis and Pedro playing on the same right side and they were going forward, I was going forward too; now the other day against Leverkusen, Dani was going forward a lot and I thought 'wait a second, I have to stay and I have to cover a position'.

"Maybe people don't see that but myself, because I've never done it before, I feel it and I said 'wait'. Before I would never have done that. Now I am thinking more - not for the team, because I always thought about the team - but sometimes I thought the right thing for the team was always going forward and now sometimes I have to stay more.

"There are so many things that I am learning and consciously from the manager's training and preparation and the way he talks; I like to listen a lot and I am very, very happy."

Best

Guardiola has guided Barcelona to the Champions League title in two of the last three seasons, to add to the string of domestic trophies he has won during his tenure.

Asked to explain his manager's secret, Fabregas said: "That he doesn't sleep - he just wants to be the best, he wants to take the best out of the players and he said it to us: he will not let this generation go away just like that.

"He doesn't want us to go to sleep at any second. He just wants to train and play well and be the best and I think that's the key to this team."

So what's it like to play alongside multiple Ballon D'Or winner Lionel Messi?

"The best players don't normally talk too much but they play very well. You know when they are happy and when they are happy and Lionel is definitely one of them," said Fabregas.

"What he wants to do is always score goals; so many teams think like he thinks, that's why I think this team took it to the next level for many seasons."

Missed part one of our exclusive interview? Then watch it by clicking here.