Pique: Cesc Fabregas had more freedom at Arsenal than Barcelona

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Gerard Pique believes Cesc Fabregas enjoyed more freedom on the pitch when he was an Arsenal player, but says the Barcelona star must play continue to play according to the instructions of the club's manager Tito Vilanova.

Fabregas has adopted a more attacking position since his transfer from Arsenal to Barcelona in the summer of 2011, having previously enjoyed a central midfield role with the Gunners, where he was able to dictate the play more regularly.

Pique believes operating in the Premier League is far more enjoyable for midfielders, and says Fabregas' natural creativity and movement are sometimes restricted due to the faster pace of life as a member of Barcelona's tiki-taka collective.

"In England you have more time on the ball; midfielders, especially those who move between the lines, have more space. There is more freedom to move around, and it is enjoyable as a midfielder," the Barcelona defender told The Telegraph.

"But I can see how going back to a positional game can be difficult if you have had the freedom to play according to your intuition instead of a collective order. I can see how Cesc would like to have more freedom as he used to have at Arsenal, but you have to play according to where you are, of course."

However, although the shackles may be tighter on Fabregas at Barcelona than they were with Arsenal, the Primera Division leaders have been able to make the most of the 25-year-old's goalscoring attributes during his time in Catalonia.

Fabregas scored a hat-trick in the defeat of Mallorca last weekend to take his season tally to 12, although the Spaniard's best haul remains the 19 he scored for Arsenal in the 2009-10 season.

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