Chelsea and Spain midfielder Cesc Fabregas is relishing the chance to go up against his club's new head coach Antonio Conte.
Cesc Fabregas is looking forward to working with Italy coach Antonio Conte when he takes over at Stamford Bridge – but first he wants to dump him out of Euro 2016 with Spain.
Italy and Spain meet on Monday in a last-16 match that is a repeat of the Euro 2012 final and the Chelsea midfielder is looking forward to the challenge.
"It's always tough against Italy. They are competitive and have a lot of experience. They have what it takes to win a tournament," Fabregas told Gazetta World.
"It will be tough to beat them as matches against the Azzurri are always 50-50, aside from the final in 2012 [which Spain won 4-0].
"[That final] It’s the best 90 minutes we’ve put together. We enjoyed ourselves and that doesn't usually happen in a final."
It is a fixture in which Fabregas has fared well. He scored a penalty against them in at Euro 2008 to help kick off his nation's incredible run of success in international football as they won that tournament before claiming the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012.
But he has another reason to impress this time around with soon-to-be Chelsea head coach Conte in charge of Italy.
"He is a great coach and a winner. He told me what he wants to do at Chelsea, but that will remain private," added Fabregas.
"I really want to work with him, but I want him to focus on Chelsea as quickly as possible. I hope that will start on Tuesday.
"I liked his Juventus side and I had watched them win, though I didn't tune in every week. I've watched more of them recently and he’s also done a great job with the national team."