Tag Archives: Leon Goretzka

5 Santi Cazorla replacements

Leon Goretzka

The lanky German central midfielder has been on a lot of people’s radars for a long time.

The 6’ 2” Schalke 04 midfielder’s contract runs out in 12 months. Whilst he is likely to mirror many playersn Germany by letting his contract run down before joining Bayern Munich, Arsenal could do well to force a move this summer.

He is certainly not a Santi Cazorla clone, but he would offer a lot in the middle of the park.

More of an Aaron Ramsey than a Santi Cazorla, his passing is not quite as good as the midget Spaniard, but he makes up for it in physical size and his ability to get around. And even though he is not as good as Cazorla on the ball, he is still a solid passer.

At 22, and with a World Cup round the corner, he would be pushing for 1st team football. Whilst Arsenal can not (and should not) guarantee this for any incoming player, a scenario where he is pushing Ramsey for a spot next to Granit Xhaka in the middle of the park is forcible.

Signing Goretzka would also leave us with the option of Ramsey moving further forward where he excels for Wales.

Jean Seri

Labelled the next “N’Golo Kante”, but I am sceptical.

The reason he has been labelled this is the same reason Abou Diaby was labelled the next Vieira, and Bruno Cheryou the next Zinedine Zidane. Seri is 5’ 5” and black.

A lot of people who claim to watch French football have been raving about him recently, comparing him favourably to Kante. But these people had probably not even heard of Kante until Leicester signed him.

Seri is a diminutive, hard working midfielder who has a £33 million release clause.

He is a defensive midfielder who covers a lot of ground, so would not be a direct replacement for Cazorla.

Signing him would simply push everyone forward. Seri would play defensive midfield, and Xhaka would be pushed further forward, becoming the deep lying playmaker that Santi Cazorla was.

Dani Ceballos

The Spain under 21 international was named Player of the Tournament at the recent 2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship.

Dani Ceballos is a terrific young player and, alongside Saul Niguez, is surely the future of Spain’s midfield.

With a reported release clause of just €15m, he is a player who should be at the top of a lot of clubs wish list this summer.

At just 20 years old, he is unlikely to make the Spain squad at the 2018 World Cup, and would possibly be happy(ish) to not be starting week in, week out and fight for his place in the squad.

Not only would he be able to replace Cazorla’s creativity, but he would also provide brilliant back up for Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez.

Max Arnold

The second German on the list, I am a massive fan of Max Arnold and he was one of my Ones To Watch at the recent European Youth tournament.

The Wolfsburg man was named alongside Dani Ceballos in the Under-21 Team of the Tournament and recently ran a friendly against England with a display of precise, intelligent passing and power.

Again, like many others on this list, he is not a Santi Cazorla clone, but would certainly add depth, competition and quality to our central midfield.

Renato Sanches

Just 12 months ago the Bayern Munich youngster was staring for Portugal in the European Championships. This summer he was relegated to the U21 tournament, and took his poor Bayern Munich form with him.

Still just 19, Arsenal should not be put off the youngster. He is clearly very talented and you do not lose his natural attributes over night.

He will probably be the most expensive on the list, but, if playing at 100%, is easily the best.

Arsenal would make a big statement by signing him.