Football fans tend to suffer in the summer, deprived of their regular club games for a couple of months. Arsenal fans have other things to worry about as well, from the fear of the club selling some of the best players to worries about Arsene Wenger and whether he will spend any money or come up with an unheard of from some far flung country. With no World cup or Euro championships, except the underage version, this summer, the only chance we get to see football is the Confederations Cup in Brazil, and it has been very entertaining so far.
Again though, Arsenal fans have got a reason for concern when watching the tournament, and that is the Arsenal fans Player of the Year Santi Cazorla. The Spaniard had a fantastic debut season at the Emirates, but I am starting to worry about him bot getting enough rest and recuperation before the new Premier League season kicks off in August. Spain play their final group match against Nigeria tomorrow, and barring a miracle they will progress. In fact, according to bookies and football experts, Spain are strong favourites to win the whole thing, despite Brazil having home advantage.
If they are right, and they usually are, that means three more games for Spain. These games are being played in tough conditions, at altitude and with heat and humidity sapping the players. Because of Cazorla’s influence on Arsenal, he played more games than any other Gunner, and he gets all over the pitch when he plays. He could do with a nice long rest, but it doesn’t look like he is going to get it. The Spanish newspaper AS has revealed that the Spanish squad have not rested for even a day. The worst that could happen would be for Cazorla to pick up an injury because his body is tired. This would be a disaster for Arsenal and would threaten to wreck the start of the season and evaporate all the confidence that the players have from the end of last season.
What is more likely, however, is that he will just not be as fresh as we need him to be. Maybe Wenger should insist that he has a good holiday. It might be better for him to miss the Asia tour and rejoin the rest of the Arsenal players later on. He is a special player and is crucial to Arsenal’s chances of success, so maybe we should treat him as a special case.