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Henry and Fabregas’ Como 1907 Just Got PROMOTED

4 minute read Published May 16, 2024

Lago di Como is widely considered as one of the most beautiful places in Europe. The lake is situated just at the foot of the Alps and offers stunning views as well as a rich history. People have been settled here for millenia and, for the rich and famous, the old villas are a popular vacation spot. Notable celebrities living in the area are George Clooney, Donatella Versace, and Madonna.

In between the Alps and the lake lies the city from which the lake got its name – Como. Founded almost 200 years BCE, it’s a very old village. Today, it’s home to around 85.000 lucky Italians, who have enjoyed the proximity to skiing, fishing and just everyday dolce vita of the surroundings. Except for the great entertainment of the most beautiful game. Until now.

In 2019, the ownership of the club changed hands. The seller was none other than former Chelsea legend Michael Essien’s wife. Aoksua Puni Essien had bought the club at a bankruptcy auction in 2017, stabilised the club and got it back to Serie C. That’s when a group of investors including Thierry Henry and Cesc Fabregas came in and bought the club.

Thierry Henry. Photo: Shutterstock

Cesc Fabregas

The former Arsenal and Barcelona player wouldn’t stop his involvement in the club with being just an investor. In 2022, he’d join the club as a player on the last professional contract of his career. While he signed a two year contract, he only played for a year before choosing to retire. Not from football, but as a player.

Because in 2023, the Spaniard took over as interim manager, after the club chose to sack Longo who’d been unable to take the club higher than sixth in the league. During the five games he was in charge as interim manager, Fabregas had a positive effect on the team and won four out of five games and they moved up to third in the table.

Cesc Fabregas. Photo: Shutterstock

Since he didn’t have the required coaching licences, and Como weren’t interested in paying a fine for him to keep managing, he stepped down after those five games. Welsh coach Osian Roberts, with a background as an assistant in the Welsh national team and to Patrick Viera at Crystal Palace, took over. Fabregas remains on the coaching staff and has started studying to obtain the licences. 

2023/2024 Season

Back in 2017 Patrick Cutrone was considered one of the most promising young players in Europe. He was very young when he started playing for the AC Milan senior team and quickly gained interest from Premier League clubs. But, after moving to Wolves in 2020 he had several failed loanings out and after 79 games and only nine goals, he decided to take a big step down and move back to his hometown. 

He makes up the attack with another former AC Milan reject – Simone Verdi. Verdi made his debut for Milan at 17 and, much like Cutrone, had several more and less successful loan spells. Before this season, he too chose to join Como.

The pair had 14 and 8 goals respectively and in the deciding game of the season, they’d be the heroes. In the 74th minute, 0-1 down to ninth placed Cosenza, Cutrone won a penalty which Verdi stepped up and converted. 

Apart from the heroics of the two former AC Milan wonderkids, their second place in the Serie B has very much been a team effort. There’s not a single Como player among the top six goal scorers or assisters. The sole exception is the Como goalkeeper, Croatian Adrian Šemper, who placed fifth for clean sheet percentage.

Como finished second, a team performance.

Looking forward

This season, the team placed second in the second tier, the step up to the top tier is a big one. While the team has an investor group, they have been getting by not spending that much on transfers. The group's primary focus has been the infrastructure and facilities. Since the club was bought on bankruptcy auction not that long ago, a lot of this is in dire need of upgrades. For almost an entire season, they had to shut down part of the stadium for security reasons. So, now the squad too will have to be upgraded.

And while the stadium is beautifully located, it still doesn’t meet Serie A standards, so the club will, first, have to play somewhere else. And second, try to upgrade it to meet those standards.

The most interesting thing though, might be what happens in the coaching position. It seems a little bit like the current manager, Osian Roberts, could be a stand-in for part owner and former interim manager Cesc Fabregas. The playmaker showed his prowess from the touchline in the five games he managed and, surely, that’s the plan moving forward.

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