Santi Cazorla to leave Arsenal this summer at end of contract
The 33-year-old’s last match for the Gunners was 6-0 over Ludogorets on 19 October 2016.
Spain midfielder Santi Cazorla will Arsenal next month when his contract ends, the club have announced.
Cazorla, who has not played for the Gunners since October 2016 because of a serious Achilles tendon injury, made 180 appearance for Arsenal since joining from Malaga in 2012.
The 33-year-old midfielder has two FA Cup winners’ medals from his time with Arsena.
“Santi is always one of my favourite players to watch. His natural ability with both feet, his speed of thought and movement were central to our best performances in recent years,” said Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis.
“He plays with a joy and freedom which is very rare. We wish him well for the future and thank him for his important contribution to our club.”
Villarreal are reportedly in “advanced negotiations” to bring Cazorla back to his former club for pre-season training.
“I am very sad to be leaving after so many great times,” Cazorla said.
“I have loved my time with the club. I will always remember the special moments we had together. The FA Cup in 2014 is something we will never forget.
“I am very proud to be part of this club’s history.”
Cazorla’s last Arsenal match was a 6-0 win over Ludogorets on 19 October 2016, and in total he scored 29 goals for the club.