Villarreal club ambassador Marcos Senna revealed on Saturday night that the club are in advanced negotiations for Santi Cazorla to join them in pre-season.

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Cazorla’s Arsenal contract comes to an end this summer, and right now the club haven’t shown any desire to renew it. As a result, it seems Villarreal are swooping in to complete a deal for their former player.

“I would love to confirm it [a permanent transfer],”┬áSenna said. “But at the moment what I’ve said is that there are advanced negotiations between Santi Cazorla and Villarreal for the player to spend pre-season with the club.

“Cazorla will be a free agent.”

This would be Arsenal’s second departure of the summer if it goes through, with Hannover’s club president already confirming they’ll sign Takuma Asano on loan next year.

The key part of Senna’s statement is his certainty that Cazorla will be a free agent. Although it sounds like there’s still some work to do for Villarreal to complete the Spaniard’s signing, it doesn’t seem that Senna believes there’s any possibility of an extension with Arsenal.

It’s too bad the way the timing of it all worked out. Cazorla was out injured for 577 days, missing 103 matches. When he finally got fit, it was right at the end of a season, and right as his contract expired.

Even so, he may still have earned a new deal, if Arsene Wenger were still around. But it just so happened he was leaving at the same time. A new manager is less likely to want to take a risk on someone so injury prone, even if it his former teammate Mikel Arteta.

We’ll see if Villarreal confirm the move in the coming days and weeks.

If Arsenal do end up needing a midfield replacement this summer, click ‘Next’ to see the options linked to the club so far

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