Cesc Fabregas was one of Arsenal’s finest players of the Premier League era.
The Spanish magician might not be as loved at the Emirates Stadium as he was before moving to Chelsea in 2014, but even the bitterest of Gunners couldn’t deny his quality in north London.
However, it must be said that Fabregas’ final season in the famous red jersey was by no means his greatest, failing to maintain his 2009/10 numbers after suffering a leg fracture vs Barcelona.
Arsenal in 2010/11
Nevertheless, Arsenal found themselves competing for the quadruple as deep into the season as February, so it wasn’t as though Fabregas’ Emirates career fizzling out hurt them too much.
And it’s not to say that Fabregas didn’t make his presence felt during the early stages of Arsenal’s Premier League campaign in 2010/11, opening his goal-scoring account in the fifth game-week.
The Gunners made the trip to the Stadium of Light having drawn at Anfield on the opening Sunday and secured subsequent victories over Blackpool, Blackburn Rovers and Bolton Wanderers.
Sunderland vs Arsenal
And while Arsenal ultimately came up short in a 1-1 draw against Steve Bruce’s men, conceding a late equaliser from Darren Bent, Fabregas’ goal on the day was certainly one to remember.
That’s because it will probably endure as one of the strangest in modern Premier League history and that has a lot to do with the fact that Fabregas’ effort was actually, well, a tackle.
The World Cup winner superbly closed down Anton Ferdinand, who was dawdling on the ball, diving in at the very moment that the Sunderland sought to lump a pass up the pitch.
Fabregas scores 40-yard tackle
But it was a split second too late with Fabregas heroically blocking the ball with his right foot, producing one of the wildest deflections you’re likely to see.
In fact, the deflection was so bizarre that it looped fully 40 yards towards the Sunderland goal, leaving Simon Mignolet to watch in horror as Fabregas’ tackle lobbed him and opened the scoring.
However, trust us when we say that our best attempts at describing the goal can’t possibly compare to the strike itself, so be sure to check out Fabregas tackle-cum-shot down below:
That has to go down as one of the wildest goals in Premier League history.
One of the strangest Premier league goals
Besides, we don’t know what’s more jarring: the fact it’s the most un-Fabregas goal you could possibly imagine or the fact it’s a bizarre precursor to Mignolet’s errors at Liverpool.
Either way, there’s no denying that Arsenal were very fortunate to take the lead on that 2010 evening in Sunderland, making it seem all the more just that the Black Cats were able to rescue a point.
I dare say that Fabregas has enjoyed somewhat better fortunes than the north-east club since then, mind.