Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has revealed that he expects Santi Cazorla’s contract situation to be resolved in January with his current deal expiring.
The Spaniard is currently sidelined with an Achilles injury which required surgery and will now keep him out for at least another two months.
His absence has been felt by the Gunners who had been struggling prior to Saturday’s 5-1 win over West Ham United, and Wenger will undoubtedly hope to have him back as soon as possible as he makes the team better.
Cazorla turns 32 later this month, but despite his advancing years, it sounds as though the Arsenal boss is keen on keeping him at the Emirates Stadium a little longer.
“Santi has six months left and we have an option,” said Wenger, as reported by the Evening Standard.
“The decision on him will be taken in January. No, it does not depend on his fitness. It’s my decision only. Santi is an exceptional player and it’s just for him to be capable to play.
“The dressing room needs a balance between experienced and youth team players. You needed to be guided as well by some experienced players when you go through difficult times. They help you always keep your feet on the ground and keep focused.”
The former Villarreal and Malaga midfield maestro is certainly a major loss for the Gunners, as they now lack a sense of balance in midfield with his effective partnership with the likes of Francis Coquelin and Granit Xhaka broken up.
Without his creativity and ability to dictate the tempo of a game from a deeper position, Arsenal have struggled to play with a sense of fluidity for the most part. As a result, unless Wenger can find a player to replace him in the long-term with a big signing in the upcoming transfer windows, then it would seemingly make perfect sense for Arsenal to offer Cazorla new terms and avoiding losing him for nothing next summer.