Arsenal head coach Arsene Wenger has hinted that Santi Cazorla could return to first-team next season, provided he can prove his fitness during the pre-season. The Spain international has not featured in a competitive game for the game since a recurrence of his Achilles injury in October 2016 and he has since undergone as many as 10 operations to rectify the issue.
Cazorla’s current deal is due to expire at the end of the campaign and Wenger seemed doubtful whether the midfielder can prolong his playing career with the next manager set to decide the Spaniard’s fate, he said: “He feels well. But he needs full preparation in preseason now to try to come back. Will he come back and where? I don’t know. Will he stay at Arsenal? I don’t know.”
The Gunners were without Henrikh Mkhitaryan for the frustrating 1-1 draw against Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Europa League semi-final tie but the Armenian could make a timely comeback during the Premier League outing versus Manchester United at Old Trafford.
Arsenal are likely to field a weakened side ahead of the return leg at the Wanda Metropolitano but Wenger would still be expected to name some of the regulars, considering United are in a good run of form, especially in their home patch. The Gunners have yet to pick up an away league point in 2018.