The Premier League is now well under way and we have had a chance to assess the new signings applying their trade in England. It is hard to find anyone more impressive after three games than Arsenal’s Santi Cazorla.
The little Spaniard has slotted into Arsenal’s midfield effortlessly and has put in some stellar performances. This was evident against Liverpool the weekend before last. Despite Liverpool having more possession, the Gunners were much more effective with the ball thanks to the positioning and passing of Cazorla. The midfielder occupied a higher position on the pitch in-between Liverpool’s midfield and defence, leading to more space for Cazorla and more incisive passes.
Cazorla’s smart positioning and runs in to space will be key this season for Arsenal. If Cazorla is able to resist dropping back in to the middle of the park, and keeps making lateral runs to find space, then he will enjoy a fine debut season at Arsenal.
Speaking after their victory over Liverpool, Lukas Podolski waxed lyrical about his team-mate Cazorla.
“I like Arsenal’s style of football and Santi’s as well – I love his style of football, with one or two touches,” he told the club’s official website.
Arsenal fans have been waiting for a player to arrive at the Emirates and try to replace Cesc Fábregas. Cazorla might just have put their minds at ease for now. It seem’s that Arsenal’s best formation may be 4-2-3-1 with the ball, and 4-4-1-1 without, with Cazorla given the freedom of the pitch. In this free role, Cazorla is able to be at his penetrative best.
Arsenal legend Robert Pires has also offered his opinion on his compatriot.
“He is a very exciting player, very gifted technically with both feet. He has an impressive creative touch and he can play in the centre or on the wings. His vision and the quality of his passing is brilliant but he can also take people on”
It seems that the signing of Santi Cazorla has shown that Arsene Wenger has not lost his touch in the transfer market. The Guardian perfectly encapsulates the Spanish international by referring to him as a two-footed, subtly skilled creator who is a “cross between Liam Brady and Cesc Fábregas, sufficiently talented to serve as an on-field airbrush, smoothing out the imperfections in other areas of Arsenal’s class of 2012-13.”
In Arsene’s own words, “Cazorla looks like he could be one of the buys of the season.”