Cesc Fabregas says he had to wait for his landmark 50th Premier League goal because of the deeper role he has often played in for Chelsea.
The former Arsenal midfielder reached his half century by scoring in the Blues’ 1-0 victory at Swansea on Saturday.
It was Fabregas first league goal since August and only his third in all competitions this season.
It was his 15th league goal for Chelsea – 35 of his 50 came during his time at Arsenal.
“I was waiting for it to happen and it took longer than I expected,” he said.
“Playing in this position it’s a little bit more difficult for me to get forward and to get into positions to score.
“But in this game (at Swansea) we had three midfielders and I have a little bit more freedom to go forward to play a bit more in the position I’ve played throughout my career.”
Chelsea’s win kept alive their hopes of snatching a Champions League place.
It took them to within two points of fourth-placed Tottenham, who play Watford at Wembley on Monday evening.
But Fabregas admits Spurs are still in a strong position.
He said: “The advantage is for them because it’s not up to us.
“Even if we win every game and they do well, we will not be in the Champions League next year, so that’s why I would prefer to be in their position.
“We just have to keep on winning, but they obviously have the advantage because they are on top.”