The Arsenal and Spain international Santi Cazorla is having a much better time of it this season than in the last one. He was not exactly poor last year but it was a bit disappointing for him and the Arsenal fans that he could not reproduce the brilliant performances from his debut season that earned him the Arsenal Player of the Year award.
It obviously affected his confidence as well, because last season the little Spaniard declared himself happy to play wherever Arsene Wenger wanted him to and he made no attempt to claim the central attacking midfield role that he had been so good in during that debut season.
Not anymore though, as Cazorla has been speaking to Arsenal Player about his preferred position and he has made no secret of the fact that he wants to play in the middle. I am sure that the return to fitness of our German international Mesut Ozil was firmly in Santi’s mind when he gave this interview. And he has every reason to feel that he deserves the number 10 role after a great month saw him voted as our best player by the fans.
Cazorla said, ““I always try to make goals. It’s important for me because I am a midfielder and I always want to help the team score, and I will try to make more before the end of the season.
“I have more space [in the middle], more possibilities to score and assist, and I like this position very much. I always can help the team and I love when I play in the middle.
“I can only give thanks to the fans for voting for me. I’m very happy when I play at home, so thanks for the support.
“I want to continue to play at this level for the rest of the season. I always want to help the team with goals. I hope to score more until the end of the season. It’s very important for me and the team.”
The message to Wenger is clear and I have to say that I agree with Cazorla on this one. It is now up to Ozil to prove that he is the better option and maybe that is just what our under achieving German needs, but the way Santi is playing will not make it easy. For now though, it looks like Ozil will be starting on the flanks against Man City, if at all, and will have to wait for his chance to shine in the middle.
Are you ready for a real battle between our creative midfielders? Who will win?