Football leading tabloid Sky Sports believes we missed Santi Cazorla’s presence in our weekend game against Middlesbrough.
Cazorla has established himself as a key member of our squad since he joined in 2011 but missed the Boro game due to an Achilles problem.
Middlesbrough put in a solid defensive performance and we couldn’t find a way to unlock their defense despite boasting the likes of Ozil and Sanchez.
Cazorla has played as deeplying playmaker since last season, offering us creativity from deep and Sky Sports believe we badly missed his creativity against Aitor Karanka’s men
Sky Sports columnist Bate wrote: “Wenger pointed to the amount of possession his side had but much of it left Middlesbrough untroubled. Penetration was lacking.”
“He may as well have screamed out the name of Santi Cazorla. His accuracy and ambition was missing.”
“It was the first time Cazorla had not been in Wenger’s starting line-up since the opening weekend defeat to Liverpool. Even then, the team had scored twice in 15 minutes following his introduction as a substitute.
We had an experience like this last season when Cazorla’s long absence due to injury coincided with a period when we couldn’t keep up in the title race and many thought it was just coincidence but the game against Liverpool and now Boro has shown that the Spaniard is key to our style of play.
Surprisingly, the player’s long term future is in doubt as his contract expires at the end of the season and is yet to be offered a new deal. Top European clubs are already circling around him and are hoping to agree a pre-contract with him in January.
I’m sure our decision makers would now act fast and not delay renewal talks any longer because it would be a big mistake to lose a key player like Santi.