The look on Cesc Fabregas's face after he scored the winning penalty for Spain against Italy said it all. The passion was there for all to see and it reminded me of when he scored goals against Milan and Liverpool last season.
He celebrated those goals with a similar look and it showed how much it meant to the young Spaniard. This is no ordinary player. He plays with a passion and love for football, and he consistently shows that same love and passion for Arsenal and Spain.
The pride I felt when he tucked the penalty away was immense and we can now call Cesc a man. The transformation from boy to man is now complete. The confidence and calmness he showed beyond his years in the face of all that pressure was second to none.
Cesc will grow even more in confidence after he scored and Arsenal are set to reap the benefits from this. He had the hopes of a nation resting on his shoulders and he passed a huge test. Lets not forget the man he was facing when he stepped up.
He was facing Buffon, widely known around the world as THE number one goalkeeper in football. Cesc even sent him the wrong way and for a player who doesn't take penalties this was no mean feat.
He showed guts and determination and lets not forget the impact he had on the game for Spain either. He changed it for them when he came on. He dictated the play and injected a new rhythm into the Spanish side.
He will grow even more from this tournament no matter what happens to Spain now. The confidence he had has grown even more and the belief he had in himself before will leap even higher.
This is the future Arsenal captain. His passion for Arsenal is clear and will become stronger with the undoubted trophies that are soon to enter the Emirates trophy cabinet. There will be good times in the future for Arsenal, Cesc Fabregas will be at the centre of it all.
His desire for the club cannot be questioned and has been strengthened by the way he has hit out at his boyhood club Barcelona for unsettling several Arsenal players. He doesn't like the way they show such disrespect in the transfer market and that Arsenal always do things properly.
In the future I can't wait to see Cesc scoring for Arsenal with that passionate look on his face, but this time with the captain's armband wrapped round his left arm. And believe me, that day will come.
Keep it Goonerish...........