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18th Jun 2015

“Selfies are still going to be taken!” – JOE talks to Santi Cazorla…

Matt Stanger

Santi Cazorla enjoyed arguably his best season for Arsenal in 2014/15, helping the Gunners to a second successive FA Cup victory and third place in the Premier League.

Speaking at PUMA’s Arsenal home kit launch, he told JOE about his hopes for catching Chelsea, improving in the Champions League and Arsenal’s love for selfies…

Are you happy with the team’s performance this season?

We finished the season very strong – it’s important to remember that we finished with an FA Cup win. We would obviously like to prepare ourselves a lot better for the upcoming season, possibly for a better placement in the Champions League as well as the Premier League.

Can you close the gap to Chelsea?

We have a very strong team. What we need to work on is consistency and our mental toughness. We know we can do that. Yes Chelsea are strong, yes they won the Premier League, but without a doubt we have a team that is strong enough to do so. We just have to work on fine-tuning.

How do Arsenal need to improve?

The team has to focus a lot more on mental toughness and consistency. There have been games we haven’t won that we should have.

Have you been encouraged by the understanding between Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil?

It’s quite normal that they would find a blossoming relationship with each other because they are both players of such a very high level. Because of their style of play their games combine, and the team is stronger because of it.


Are you excited when players of that quality arrive?

I was very excited – it’s extremely important to see how everyone gets excited because the more players of the calibre of Alexis and Mesut that join, the better I will become as a player and the better the team will become.

Does Alexis’ exhausting schedule – World Cup, first season in England, and now the Copa America – concern you ahead of the next campaign?

He’s adapted himself very well to the Premier League. Yes, his schedule is extremely tight, so from tournament to tournament it must be exhausting for him. I hope he gets a good chance to rest because he is a fundamental part of the team. He needs his time off of course to continue to perform to the top level.

What did you think of Jamie Carragher’s criticism of Arsenal’s love for ‘selfies’?

It is something we haven’t given a lot of attention to. Selfies are in fashion, on trend, something that teams do when they are proud about winning a match.

Comments are comments and it is something that happened – but selfies are still going to be taken!


Do you think English clubs can challenge the likes of Barcelona and Real Madrid in the Champions League?

We have to fight against La Liga – teams like Real Madrid and Barcelona – that have some of the best players in the world. It’s something we have to aspire to – not that the Premier League is inferior.

We have to consider a variety of other leagues, the Bundesliga is also very strong. So it’s our desire to continuously better ourselves and position our team and the Premier League at a much higher standard.

Would you like to return to Spain one day?

For the time being, Arsenal is my home. I’m not thinking about the future I live day by day and right now Arsenal is my life.

Do you find it strange that more English players don’t go abroad?

Yes, it’s strange that we don’t see more English players going to the Spanish league. We’ve seen Beckham, Owen for example, but besides that we don’t see as many as we would like.

It’s often said that the Spanish game is more technical than the Premier League – would a player of Jack Wilshere’s talent be able to adapt?

He is definitely someone who could play in Spain. He’s very talented. We’re lucky to have him at Arsenal, but if ever he decided to move forward in his career, he definitely has the capability to play in a Spanish team.


One of your biggest strengths is being able to play with both feet – did this come naturally?

Being able to use both feet was something that came naturally to me ever since I started playing. However, it’s something I work on all the time to make sure that the level never gets any lower.

What I would do after training is stay half an hour and kick the ball against a wall with my weaker foot over and over again to make sure it gets stronger. Young players should remember that everything comes from hard work, so never give up.

Do you have a favourite foot?

I always preferred my right foot. Ever since I was young that was my preferred foot. I was a little bit hurt in my right ankle once and therefore I started to use my left foot a lot more. However, you have to use both.

The new PUMA Arsenal 15/16 Home Kit is Powered By Fans and available to buy from 25 June, pre-order at #ForeverArsenal