No panic – But who should replace Cazorla on Saturday?

Arsenal’s very own little Spanish genius Santi Cazorla was brought off on Wednesday night after getting a stamp on his Achilles, and Arsene Wenger warned that he may not be fit enough to face Middlesbrough this weekend.

But now Cazorla himself has announced that he is not worried in the slightest and thinks he will be okay for the weekend. The midfielder said yesterday: “I have a pain in the tendon,”

“I got a kick in the first half and during the second I still had some pain so, with the result in our favour, the boss decided to give me a rest.

“It was good to recover for Saturday.”

So that sounds like Santi wants to play, but is it even worth the risk to play him this weekend? We all know that Granit Zhaka is banned and Aaron Ramsey will not be risked by Wenger so early in his recovery, but we have Elneny on the sidelines who must be dying for a game and can surely fill the gap.

But I think my idea is better. I would love to see Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain given a chance in his favourite position down the middle. I expect Iwobi, Walcott and Sanchez to lead the front line, but the Ox has shown some new found confidence this season and could perhaps show us that he could be the long term replacement for the 31 year old Cazorla in the future.

What do you think?



  1. Sorry, no time for sentiments, Ox can’t defend, that one of reasons he is on the bench, stop favouritism, Elneny is far better option than Ox,let him sit on the bench, and learn. Is no time for experiment. We need the 3 pointso.

    1. I really despise the term ‘favouritism’ thrown around by so many Arsenal fans when a decision doesn’t align with their own… It’s such a cop out.
      If by far and away the majority of fans had had their way Theo wouldn’t have graced the pitch yet, or even still be at the club. Just maybe the people who run the club, train with the players every day and ultimately make the decisions are more knowledgeable than the average fan…

      1. and how many players have we kept in the hope they overcome injuries or their development progresses at the detriment of our pursuit for silverware? this thinking is a false narrative to suit a particular ideology that wenger is not to be brought to question by the “average fan”, but I remember us relying on mathieu flamini in cm for a large portion of last season, that doesn’t sound to me like a very knowledgeable decision by a club apparently as ambitious as we claim to be

  2. Sorry, no time for sentiments, Ox can’t defend, that one of reasons he is on the bench, stop favouritism, Elneny is far better option than Ox,let him sit on the bench, and learn. Is no time for experiment. We need the 3 point.

    1. It’s not favortism. 9 out 10 Arsenal fans hold Elneny in higher esteem than Ox, maybe even more than 9 of every 10, if they were put on the spot. The only reason Ox’s name is mentioned is because our two most forward thinking options are maybe out, Ramsey is out too. So Ox is mentioned as a box to box alternative to having our two most defensive CDM’s play together. It is purely as a more attacking option he is brought up, if we were playing Liv or Spu you can be sure that Elneny and Coquelin would be the only way to go, besides rushing back players.

  3. El Neny is the natural choice but is less creative than the Ox in that role. Dont get me wrong, I like El Neny and according to Iwobi nobody runs further in training. However Coq covers almost as much ground and that takes some attacking intent away from our game having 2 CMs do that. I dont know why I saw the slug-fest that was MIDWAT on Sky on Sunday but I saw enough to know that Boro will be aggressive and will cover a lot of ground without tiring. I would start Ox, bag the points and shore up with El Neny for Iwobi in the last hour.

    1. I think being winger is lot different as center midfielder. As CM, Ox doesn’t need to chase back the missing ball very often as he does poorly as winger. Just need to be more discipline to guard his area. Suppose that Boro will play defensively, we’ll need lots of creativity to crack in. It’s a risky but worth strategy to give Ox his favor position. Unleash Oxlade Chamberlain this weekend, that’s my opinion.

      1. Well that worked out well, didn’t it? smfh…
        If the PL truly is a jungle, then you need all your players available. Xhaka card should have been appealed, he might have been available

  4. I do not think OX has the positional awareness to play in CM and besides his passing isn’t too great. I think Elneny is the better option.
    I realized someone mentioned favoritism… How long has Arsenal suffered from that with Wenger’s decision to play Ramsey everywhere so he can develop… It’s time to mount a title challenge the best team plays. Mo plays ✌?️

  5. it’s an obvious choice, Elneny..his build up play from deep and defensive ability is what gives him the edge even over Ramsey’s eccentricity and agility.

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