MX23RW : Wednesday, January 16 21:21:55

Former Arsenal favourite Santi Cazorla grateful to Villarreal

Santi Cazorla grateful to Villarreal
© Reuters
Santi Cazorla thanks Villarreal for giving him a chance to restart his career in Spain following a long-term injury layoff.

Former Arsenal favourite Santi Cazorla has thanked Villarreal and their supporters for taking him back despite his long-term injury layoff.

The 33-year-old had not kicked a ball since October 2016 prior to this week because of an Achilles problem that required 10 operations in a little over a year.

Cazorla feared that he would never play professional football again, but he regained his fitness towards the tail end of last season with Arsenal.

A new contract offer at the Emirates Stadium was not forthcoming, however, and Cazorla is now back at Villarreal, where he spent three years earlier in his career.

Speaking after making a cameo in the friendly against Hercules earlier this week, the Spaniard told Marca: "People tell me that I have to assess where I am now and where I was 20 months ago and to think about what I have gone through.

"I want to train with my colleagues again and to feel like a footballer. It is hard to express what it feels like to be out on the pitch after so much time. To feel like a footballer again, to feel the love of the people and the reception they gave me.

"They have treated me very well from my first day here, it is like I never left. I cannot really repay or reward what Villarreal have done for me. Not only when I was 18, but because they opened their doors after two years out and gave me their facilities without putting pressure on me. It is something that only this club can give me."

La Liga side Villarreal are understood to have offered Cazorla a 12-month contract.


Click here for more stories about Santi Cazorla

Click here for more stories about Arsenal

Share this article now:
Santi Cazorla in training with Arsenal in October 2016
Read Next:
Santi Cazorla training with Alaves
>

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool22183150104057
2Manchester CityMan City22172359174253
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs22160646222448
4Chelsea22145340172347
5Arsenal22125546321441
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd22125544321241
7Watford229583232032
8Leicester CityLeicester229492625131
9West Ham UnitedWest Ham229493032-231
10Everton228683331230
11Wolverhampton WanderersWolves228592328-529
12Bournemouth2283113142-1127
13Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2275102430-626
14Crystal Palace2264122028-822
15Burnley2263132343-2021
16Southampton2247112339-1619
17Cardiff CityCardiff2254131941-2219
18Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2246121631-1518
19Fulham2235142049-2914
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2225151337-2411

Subscribe to our Newsletter


Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Login, I already have my ad-free pass
Log in to customise Sports Mole
Buy ad-free access (show me the options)
Buy monthly ad-free access for £1.20/month
Buy yearly ad-free access for £12 (2 months free)
Settings - Logout - Manage your account
Settings - Logout - Manage your account