Are Arsenal to blame for Santi Cazorla’s injuries late on in his career?
- Cazorla had only missed 10 matches with fractured fibula at Villarreal before joining Arsenal
- Midfielder was sidelined with ankle problem back in October after Ludogorets clash
- No timeframe on Santi Cazorla’s return
- Santi Cazorla doing double training sessions in effort to get fit
Squawka believes that Arsenal essentially ran Cazorla into the ground during his time at the club and claims that they’re to blame for his poor injury record.
And when you look at the stats, it’s hard to argue.
When the Spaniard joined Arsenal from Malaga in 2012, where he’d spent just one season, he was thrown straight in at the deep end, making 49 appearances – the most he’d ever made in one season before.
He went on to make 46 appearances the next season and then 53 appearances the next.
The midfielder’s time on the pitch also increased from an average of 66 minutes per appearance at Villarreal, to 83 minutes at Arsenal.
This, combined with his age, began to impact his fitness, which until he moved to north London, had been fantastic.
After Mikel Arteta’s body gave up, Francis Coquelin was recalled from his loan spell at Charlton and while, at the time, the midfielder offered some energy, creatively Arsenal were still lacking.
In 2015, Cazorla was introduced as a central midfielder against Crystal Palace, when he’d mainly been a playmaker before.
The Gunners went on to win and the little man went on to start eight out of the next 12 clashes. His pass accuracy went from 75% to 92%.
The Gunners win rate rose to 65.5% with the Spaniard in the mix.
The next season, Cazorla was thrown straight back into action after missing 28 games the following term.
Despite this, he was including in ‘rest-light’ – games with four or fewer days rest in between – and during what will most likely be his final season, ‘rest-light’ games made up 45% of his appearances.
Is it any wonder that the midfielder has now struggled to get fit and his body seems to be rebelling against healing?