Cazorla predicts result of Arsenal v Villarreal – ” the two clubs of my life”

Not only is Villarreal being coached by the ex-Arsenal manager Unai Emery, but it is also the home club of our very own little Spanish Wizard Santi Cazorla. He spent 8 years there (except for one season at Recreativo Huelva where he won Spain’s Player Of The Year).

He then spent one season at Malaga, where he helped to qualify for the Champions League for the only time in their history, but was immediately snapped up by Arsene Wenger.

Six season’s later he returned to Villarreal on a two year contract and was back to his very best after the horrific injuries he went through at the Emirates. It’s fair to say that he loves both clubs as much as each other, so what does he have to say about the upcoming Europa League semi-final?

“Arsenal have a squad that could fight for the top five in England but this year, because of injuries, it has not been functioning in the Premier League,” Cazorla said in the Express.

“I have watched some matches and I really don’t understand this situation.

“Maybe pressure affects the players, this is the only explanation for me.

“I don’t have any doubts about either bench — Unai Emery is a big coach who has demonstrated his level at other clubs and Mikel Arteta, although he is new in the past year or so, has much experience as player.”

“This match is emotional and special because Villarreal and Arsenal are the two clubs of my life,” he added.

“Now, it is impossible for me to choose a winner but I am happy that one of them will get to the final and if they were to beat Manchester United there it would be sensational.

“The round is 50/50.

“Neither club is enjoying a ‘regular’ season but this semi-final is key to both team’s campaigns for several reasons, and being in the final and back in the Champions League is a huge motivation for any player.

“That’s normal and maybe that will give them a boost.

“Playing the second leg in London is not as decisive as it would have been before the coronavirus situation and I expect two matches with lots of emotion and fight, and for the team with the best defensive line to win.”

Although he says that the “team with the best defensive line” will win it, but I think it will be the team that scores the most goals!

Tags Cazorla Villarreal

40 Comments

  1. Reggie says:

    There you go, even Cazorla says the team is top 5 and is not performing to their potential. Obvious really i know but its true.

    1. SueP says:

      Reggie
      He didn’t say that
      He added they could fight for top5 but identified injuries which have played a part this season. I call that sitting on the fence from Cazorla

    2. Highbury Hero says:

      He can’t say what is the problem publicly for obvious reasons but we all know the squad has quality for top 4.

  2. Dan kit says:

    2 clueless managers going head to head ,can’t wait to witness a great game of football 😂
    Maybe they will have a glass of wine after the game and talk about how they have ruined our once great club .

    1. ozziegunner says:

      Emery, a clueless manager, who won 3 Europa League trophies and 7 domestic French trophies (second only to Laurent Blanc) at PSG with a higher win percentage than Ancellotti, Blanc, Tuchel and thus far Ponchettino.
      It didn’t work out at Arsenal, so definitely a mug coach/manager, but then again how has his successor fared?

      1. Highbury Hero says:

        I usually agree with Dan Kit views except when it come to Emery. I was once in the view he was unjustly fired but seeing the situation that time I think it was the correct decision, but he is far from clueless manager.

        It is commendable for Arsenal management to stick with the current manager against player power but what is the point when the manager has the board backing, players are playing for him and still he has the worst results in our history.

        Next time the board should hire a proper manager and back him like they do with unsatisfactory Arteta.

        Mohsan, Danny and LCW I officially apologize for not using good language to you when I was pro Arteta and in the end I have come to agree with what you had been saying from the start.

      2. Johnze says:

        100% agree with ozziegunner. Emery did a fantastic first season. I don’t know how it slightly derailed at the end but we finished 1 point shy of 4th and EL final. And then i don’t know. He panicked. He seemed to loose the thing, loose the players. I don’t know what happened but emery is definitely a good coach. Hopefully he won’t prove it against us

        1. Dan kit says:

          @ johnze
          You miss out the fact that we needed one point form the last 4 games to actually get 4th, like I said clueless .
          @ozzie
          I’m not interested what he’s done or is doing at other clubs ,here he was a disaster, messed up getting 4th and was COACH for the single most embarrassing performance I’ve ever witnessed in Baku.
          He’s already bringing Villarreal down to his lvl in the weakest la liga season ever seen .
          Hopefully Arteta follows him to Spain .

          1. ozziegunner says:

            Dan, you said Emery was “clueless” as a manager (he was head coach at Arsenal). You not not clarify, that you were referring to his time at Arsenal, which Johnz put to bed.
            As far as missing 4th place, I suppose Emery coached Aubameyang to miss a penalty against Spurs and Xhaka to foolishly leave his team a man short in another game in the run in?

      3. towny254 says:

        Well spoken ozziegunner Emery a top manager our players downed tools and he was sacked

        1. ozziegunner says:

          👍 Thank you, with time as things pan out, others will come to see the light.

  3. gotanidea says:

    Villareal’s players are less popular than ours and Emery knows the tendencies of our senior players, so they could surprise our squad. But if Emery is still using the tactics he used at Arsenal, we’ll get a chance to at least draw against them in Spain

    1. Stephanie says:

      His tactics won 3 EL and took us to the final

      1. gotanidea says:

        In my opinion, Arteta’s tactics are better than Emery’s. But let’s see whether my assumption is true or not in EL

        1. John Ibrahim says:

          arteta tactics suits Arsenal style with the current players

          Emery tactics suits certain kind of players which is why he was successful with some teams

          1. gotanidea says:

            Emery seems to have gotten the high pressing players his system required

    2. ozziegunner says:

      gotanidea, out of interest, what does a player’s popularity have do with anything?

  4. Billy bee says:

    Just get rid of Leno for a start , cause he has wrecked the confidence of the arsenal defence , it’s hardly talked about but selling Martinez at a cut price fee was the worst decision arteta has ever made even if you could buy him now he would treble what arteta sold him for its a disgrace!!!!!!

    1. Dan kit says:

      “It’s hardly talked about selling Martinez at a cut price fee “
      I mean there was 3 articles yesterday and one today so far pretty much discussing what you just posted .
      Spaghetti fingers Martinez as moved on think we should all do the same .

      1. Sue says:

        Even though some claim there’s no point going on about it, but do so anyway!! Spot on, Dan 👍

  5. siamois says:

    OT: Burnley 3-0 up against Wolves Chris Wood’s hat-trick !

    1. gotanidea says:

      Wood isn’t a technically gifted target man, but his height and strength make him very dangerous in the penalty box

      Tomas Soucek and him are towering monsters that have made a lot of problems to us. Typical Mourinho’s player and we should’ve had at least one target man like them

  6. jon fox says:

    “The team that scores the most goals will win it!” If I were a bookie I would give THAT comment no less than 100% likelihood of being true. I would have laughed at this superfluous line , were it not for the exclamation mark that followed.

    Which shows how accurate my own long held contention is that accuracy in language is vital if we are not to misunderstand each others REAL meanings. I of course accept that a great many on here do not have English as their prime language and thus I make due allowances.

    To be honest, I don’t give a tinkers cuss for language pedantry, PROVIDED THAT, the TRUE meaning is clear and unmistakable.

  7. Samuel Akinsola Adebosin says:

    I advice all the Arsenal Europa League players out of whom will be select to start the Villarreal EL match and play in it to watch today’s La Liga match between Villarreal and Barcelona very careful to not miss anything in the match.

    So that they will not miss any action in the game that happened. But see the way manner the Yellow Marines play their game against the big club Barca. Arsenal is a big club that Villarreal will at home will host to in the EL semifinal 1st leg match on Thursday night as us are already aware.

    Therefore, the Gunners should study carefully the pattern of the Villarreal game and tactics to understand them properly ahead of their meeting. And also study the physical strength attributes that the individual Villarreal players has as a player and as team.

    So that the Gunners who will be selected to play against them would have known what are going to be instock in the game to deal with them in the match.. And put a game plan in place in conjunction with their coach M Arteta and his coaching staff on how they will neutralize Villarreal strength and power as a team and individual player in the match.

    And also capitalized on any weaknesses they have seen in the Villarreal player as individual and a team in their today’s match at home to Barca. So that they can seize on their individual weaknesses and as a team to undermine them in the game when they come against them. And claim another ELC handsome match away win on them. Similar to the 0-4 away match win that they had over Slavia Prague the other last Thursday night in the Europa League.

  8. Samuel Akinsola Adebosin says:

    I advice all the Arsenal Europa League players out of whom will be selected to start the Villarreal EL match and play in it to watch today’s La Liga match between Villarreal and Barcelona very carefully to not miss anything in the match.

    So that they will not miss any action in the game that happened. But see the way and manner the Yellow Marines play their game against the big club Barca. Arsenal is a big club that Villarreal will at home host in the EL semifinal 1st leg match on Thursday night as us are already aware.

    Therefore, the Gunners should study carefully the pattern of the Villarreal game and tactics to understand them properly ahead of their meeting. And also study the physical strength attributes that the individual Villarreal player has as a player and as team.

    So that the Gunners who will be selected to play against them would have known what are going to be instock in the game for them to deal with them in the match.. And put a game plan in place in conjunction with their coach M Arteta and his coaching staff on how they will neutralize Villarreal strength and power as a team and individual players in the match.

    And also capitalized on any weaknesses they have seen in the Villarreal player as individual and a team in their today’s match at home against Barca. So that they can seize on their individual weaknesses and as a team to undermine them in the game when they come against them. And claim another ELC handsome match away win on them. Similar to the 0-4 away match win that they had over Slavia Prague the other last Thursday night in the Europa League.

  9. ozziegunner says:

    Based on the transfer market value of the individual players available to each club, these matches should be no contest.
    However a good team, will always beat a poor team, even though the individual players may be better.
    The results all depend on whether Arsenal turns up or not over two legs.

    1. guy says:

      That about sums it up Oz. But VR have surprised a lot of teams by being better than they should be. We beat Slavia because we didnt underestimate them so there’s a precedent there. Now we just need one (sorry two!) of those oh so rare top performances, and that would get us through. Im pretty sure even the players have no idea which Arsenal will turn up, so how are we supposed to know! Now where’s that double headed coin…?

  10. Sue says:

    OT.. Come on City – Foden masterclass please!!

    1. guy says:

      What a player Sue – a joy to watch and a very possible future World FOTY. Will chat with you about him after the game. Southgate permitting, England have one heck of an offensive team evolving.

      1. Sue says:

        They did it, Guy 🥳 Brilliant game, City were dominant… and if Raheem ‘can’t pass, won’t pass’ Sterling wasn’t so greedy, it could’ve been by a lot more!

        Agreed – Foden is a joy to watch! A game changer… I may even have to start watching England 😂

        1. Sir Michael says:

          Sue Somebody ought to tell Sterling it is a TEAM game Greedy bas***d

          1. Sue says:

            🤣 Spot on!!!

  11. Andrew Elder says:

    We are now 10th and could be 11th in a few hours. A win on Thursday is vital to get some confidence going.

    1. SueP says:

      Totally agree Andrew
      And we are 11th 😠
      I’m flummoxed by how inconsistent we are. Then there have been some dreadful errors during games that beggar belief and have cost Arsenal dearly.
      Just when I thought there was a chink of light, senior players in crucial positions are injured/ill and the pendulum swings the other way

  12. NY_Gunner says:

    *OT*
    Anyone hear about Daniel Ek, the Swedish co founder of Spotify, wanting to buy AFC?

  13. Stephanie says:

    Cazorla was one of our greatest midfielders

    1. ozziegunner says:

      Arsenal could still do with Santi Cazorla now; unfortunately he wanted to return to Spain.

  14. Aaron says:

    ksE ain’t selling, stuck with this lot until we are relegated to third division or just pure apathy and mid table forever.

  15. Sean Williams says:

    What a great player Cazorla was. A great man too. Maybe one day he will be Arsenal manager. He could not be worse than the manager we have at the moment.

  16. Argooner says:

    “Although he says that the “team with the best defensive line” will win it, but I think it will be the team that scores the most goals!”….

    Yes, that is indeed how football works.

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