Arsenal Depot

A depository for musings on Arsenal FC

Where Will Santi Cazorla Play?

The red carpet is being rolled out outside the Emirates as we speak. Allegedly, Santi Cazorla is due at Arsenal for a medical today before sealing a £17m transfer from cash-strapped Malaga.

Usually I prefer to be cautious with transfer talk but the sheer number of media outlets carrying the story engenders confidence. Assuming the deal does go through, it raises the question of where the Spaniard will play. Because as a club record signing, play he will and judging by his performances over the last couple of seasons, he’s certainly good enough to warrant a first team place at Arsenal.

The Spaniard can play on either flank as well as through the middle. No doubt Arsene’s interest in Cazorla was heightened by this versatility. With injuries dogging Arsenal’s midfield like the medieval plague, his arrival would effectively add an extra man in three key positions. It’s hard to predict exactly what Wenger has in mind for him because his position is tied to other squad dynamics.

Assuming Arshavin and Bendtner are not at the club next season and Ryo Miyaichi will be loaned out once more, our attacking options in wide areas include Walcott, Gervinho, Podolski and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. With Van Persie’s departure Podolski could be used as the central striker, competing with Giroud for a starting place. The Ox is still raw so he’s likely continue to as a super-sub plus the youngster has played pre-season in a central position, a sign that Arsene sees him developing into that role in the future. Even if Walcott’s contract were to be extended, Arsenal still need reinforcements on the flanks and Cazorla might challenge Gervinho and Walcott for a starting place.

In the centre of midfield, the manager sees Abou Diaby as first choice when fit. If, and it’s a big IF I know, Diaby gets a run of games together Cazorla chances would be limited in the central attacking role with Rosicky, Ramsey and possibly Oxlade Chamberlain providing back up. This is before considering Jack Wilshere’s return and assuming that when he does, he would challenge either Song or Arteta for a starting place for one of the two deeper midfield positions.

By my reckoning, Santi Cazorla is being targeted to play wide. The fact he can play through the middle is an added advantage and provides the manager with flexibility but primarily the Spaniard will increase competition on the flanks.

In which case, the Nuri Sahin rumours are also believable. Yossi Benayoun’s loan spell last season proved very successful and more than Cazorla providing options in central midfield, I think it will be Sahin who would add depth  in the CAM role and competition for Rosicky, Ramsey and the Ox. And with the player coming on loan, Arsene can use him judiciously if the regular starters are injured, fatigued or suffering a dip in form.

Regardless of Sahin’s arrival, the Cazorla signing would give Arsenal a more formidable squad. If the Real Madrid were to brought in as well, it would cover most eventualities over the course of the season in the midfield.

Of course, all this is purely conjecture at this point but Arsene Wenger has been criticized in the past for not possessing a good enough squad to fight for honours. Everything that’s happened in the summer so far suggests lessons have been learnt and that augurs well for our immediate future.

If one or both of these deals come through, that leaves only the goalkeeping position to be strengthened. Wojciech Szczesny is deservedly number one and has the makings of a great keeper, but Arsenal need genuine competition for the Pole. Neither Fabianski nor Mannone are good enough to challenge him and one injury could make us vulnerable, what with the defending already requiring plenty of work as it is.

Back tomorrow.

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24 thoughts on “Where Will Santi Cazorla Play?

  1. Ollya1 on said:

    Interesting 1.

  2. we need the franch right back i dont no is name but it matheu debuch

    • JoeyMonday on said:

      what… we have the best french RB, imo the best RB in the world, Bacary Sagna

    • peejay on said:

      bakary sagna is a wondaful player,and carl jenkinson is also improving..for me cazorla and sahin in arsenal will bring about alot of competiton in d team and dats a gud thng.with these we will have a gud bench and a perfect startin eleven..we all hope rvp stays..1love.

  3. Simon Malenya on said:

    This is great news. What is required and what we have been missing at arsenal in depth especially in the final third when we usually become vulnerable to habitual injuries. Carzola and Sahin have a point to prove and the players we already have, do need competition to perform at optimum level…..come on gooners!!!

  4. Yuslat ng on said:

    Well done for your good analysis but you forgot defending mid-field because song has turned to offensive player rather than defending and also our left back.

  5. Its a preety gud nws considering d fact dat over d years d struggle 4 a very gud and realiable squad this is a very gud news 4 all arsenal fans.

  6. kayode on said:

    Good news wth the imminent signings. I will be glad if arsenal takes a look at senegalese Moussa Konate.

  7. Gud news 4 al d gunners

  8. fabregas roll for sure wenger is missing that creativity in the middle a player who already knows what to do. FOLLOW ME @KYEKYE45 ILL FOLLLOW BACK

  9. Agreed. CazOrla will play left wing as wenger hinted that podolski would play centrally. He won’t play right wing because if Walcott, and it’s pointless selling Walcott to make way for cazorla coz cazorla can play On the left.

  10. Olufemi Longe on said:

    Song could be constrain back to his defending role now dat we have more options in AM

  11. Thiago14 on said:

    This whole asumption that Fabianski is not good should stop.He is an International for a reason.

  12. Cant wait to see these transfers happen,what a team to show the world.

  13. samuel on said:

    Rather obvious where Cazorla should play ,in the midfield with his fellow Spaniard
    Arteta,with Diaby the get forward midfielder ,supporting the strikers and Rosicky
    a backup ,no place for Ramsey,Wilshere and Walcott,if Sahin arrives on loan,soun
    ds good to me ?

  14. ramsey joel on said:

    Wao absolute unbelivable wenger finally learnth his lesson, i cant wait to see the season begin,

  15. Desmond Duson on said:

    Carzola wuld b play’d in gervinho’s wing. It culd b carzola, giroud nd podolski as d front three nd song, sahin nd arteta/wilshere or rosicky in d midfield. Where wenger hasn’t done much dis summer is in our defence. We conceded 49 goals lst season 4 crying out loud. We need a gud bk up 4 sagna nd also a gud left footer 4 gibb’s position

  16. Victor Alli on said:

    Am growing impatient of the eventual arrival of both summer signings. Will be excited to see them in Red and White jersey of my ambitious club.

  17. nwite c. on said:

    good article though,but the question of the position that cazorla or any other player will play in arsenal is a shear waste of time,because the next question i will ask will definitly provid a shot up to that,WHAT IS THE JOB OF ARSENE WENGER.???

  18. Hayor on said:

    Song should be use for the defensive midfilder & beside who will he challenge in the central defence,verminator or konscienly?

  19. tuncasjo on said:

    Santi can play anywhere at d midfield as we dont have enough experienced midfielders Ramsey and Abou shd be loan out as in they hv not be helping d club and wenger need one good defender in case of injury.

  20. Santi gras on said:

    Surely cazorla gona b a right flank

  21. james on said:

    we need a left back,big time,

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