by Nia Griffiths

While away on national duty for Spain, Santi Cazorla admitted he’s something of a veteran now and revealed that he feels good playing for this Spanish side.

Speaking before Spain’s tie with Belarus on 14th June, which they won 1-0, our midfield maestro said, “We have a great team and the only thing we’re missing is belief in ourselves. What happened before the first Euro win was fair, we were in this situation. There was a group of great players but we didn’t have the tradition and needed to believe in ourselves. Then things changed. When we started making important cuts, beating Italy in the quarterfinals for example, we starting to believe.

He continued, “In order to maintain this, the most important thing is to remain united, include the younger players and ensure the same spirit and way of doing things is passed along to them. Maintaining calm and keeping persistent while not getting down over the losses. This is how to achieve success.”

The 30-year-old played a full 90 minutes – something he hasn’t done since facing France in April 2014. He’s now appeared 73 times for the side, which is a huge achievement – a fact that’s not lost on him.

When speaking about the Spanish team’s form, he mentioned their manager, Vicente del Bosque, “He knows how to maintain this attitude and get the best out of us. I’m now a veteran player and I think that we can get back to our winning ways,” he said.

Cazorla has finished a terrific season with Arsenal and it’s only right that his hard work is paying off and getting recognised. For many players, cementing themselves properly in the national team is a big step in their career and for our pint-size Spaniard, it’s no different.

The next set of European qualifying matches aren’t until September, when Spain will face Slovakia. Hopefully Cazorla will continue to feature heavily and carry on excelling in every area of his footballing career.