• Premier League

Arsenal set to confirm Cazorla arrival

ESPN staff
August 3, 2012
Santi Cazorla cost Malaga €19 million 12 months ago © PA Photos

Arsenal look set to benefit from the turmoil at Malaga by wrapping up a cut-price €16 million deal for Spain international Santi Cazorla.

Cazorla joined Malaga just 12 months ago for €19m, and the playmaker's performances in guiding the club to fourth spot in La Liga, and a Champions League qualifying spot, should have increased his value even further.

"To sell him for €20 million would be to give him away - I do not believe the club would do that," the Andalucians' coach, Manuel Pellegrini, said just last week, but with money now quickly required to pay Malaga's mounting debts, Arsenal look to have got themselves a bargain.

Local paper Malaga Hoy reports that Cazorla was given permission on Thursday to miss training and fly to London with his wife and agent to undertake the first stage of his Arsenal medical. The paper reports that the transfer could be completed on Friday.

Malaga released a statement via the club website on Thursday claiming that a period of "internal financial restructuring" was required to meet UEFA's incoming Financial Fair Play regulations. This has been taken in Spain to mean that Malaga's Qatari owner, Abdullah Al-Thani, has decided against any further investment in the club, and rumours are still circulating that he remains keen to sell up.

Pellegrini, who also managed Cazorla to Champions League qualification at Villarreal, is reportedly deeply unhappy with the current state of affairs and considering his position.

Cazorla could soon be joined at the Emirates by another La Liga-based midfielder, with Real Madrid's Nuri Sahin seemingly set to arrive on loan for the 2012-13 season if Jose Mourinho's side can complete the signing of Luka Modric from Arsenal's North London rivals Tottenham.

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