The Gunners skipper had been a doubt for last night's Champions League quarter-final first-leg against Barcelona, which ended in a dramatic 2-2 draw at Emirates Stadium, after suffering severe bruising to his knee and leg at Birmingham.
However, after coming through a fitness test in the warm-up, Fabregas returned to lead the side against his boyhood club – and played a pivotal role in their comeback after falling 2-0 down to a brace from Zlatan Ibrahimovic which looked to have all but killed off the tie.
During the closing stages, after substitute Theo Walcott had pulled a goal back, the Gunners skipper – who would have missed the second leg against his old club anyway after being booked in the first half – was bundled over by Carles Puyol and awarded a penalty. It was during that collision with the Barcelona captain, who was shown a red card, that Fabregas suffered the latest problem which the Spain international believes could even end his season – and perhaps threaten participation in South Africa this summer.
"I am not good," said Fabregas, who left Emirates Stadium on crutches. "We have to wait (for the scans), but I hope I can wear the Arsenal shirt again this season. I fear the worst, which is that I have broken something. I do not think it is going to be good news."
Fabregas maintained it had not been a gamble to pick him. "Until the penalty, I was feeling quite good," the Arsenal captain said.
Arsenal also lost defender William Gallas to a reccurrence of his calf problem in what was a first appearance since early February, and manager Arsene Wenger believes the veteran centre-back could now struggle to recover this season. Andrey Arshavin, meanwhile, is a doubt for Saturday's Barclays Premier League clash against Wolves after limping off midway through the first half with a calf injury.
In last night's other quarter-final, Inter Milan secured a 1-0 first-leg lead over CSKA Moscow at the San Siro.