Back in 2003, a Spanish prodigy by the name of Cesc Fabregas joined Arsenal from Barcelona and since that very moment, the Gunners haven’t looked back.
His emergence on the Premier League and at Highbury saw a stream of technically gifted playmakers make a name for themselves in English football with Arsene Wenger covering his side in elite passers and elegant distributors.
The likes of Tomas Rosicky, Jack Wilshere, Aaron Ramsey, Mikel Arteta, Mesut Ozil and Santi Cazorla, among others, would all follow in the illustrious line of midfield maestros to dominate the middle of the park in Islington.
That said, not all got the farewells that their Arsenal careers deserved. Ramsey left under a cloud during the reign of Unai Emery, Rosicky and Wilshere were both injury prone, Ozil departed controversially and Cazorla never got to say goodbye after his injury hell.
He had a skin graft taken from his arm to repair his leg sufficiently and had it not been for that problem, the Spaniard may well still be at Arsenal to this day.
Such was his mesmerising qualities in the centre of the pitch that he is still a fine player in the year 2022, scoring and creating on a regular basis in the middle east at Qatari side Al Sadd.
However, with Arsenal looking to strengthen their options in midfield this summer, Arteta could find his own version of Cazorla in Leicester’s Youri Tielemans.
The Belgian has been fielding interest from the Gunners for a while now and providing Edu can clear out a few bodies from the squad, a deal that may end up setting them back £25m could be on the cards.
That’s certainly the word of journalist Ben Jacobs who recently said in an interview with GIVEMESPORT: “If they don’t sign him, it’s not because Tielemans doesn’t want to join, it’s not because the deal can’t be agreed with Leicester, I think Arsenal are very confident if they do come to the table and finally make a bid that they will be able to strike a deal with Leicester, it’s down to Arteta’s desire, and at the moment, he doesn’t want to move.”
Confidence is evidently rife in the Arsenal camp and if they do decide to open negotiations, a move could happen rather quickly.
It would be a tremendous signing too, with the Belgium international boasting Premier League experience and the abilities to influence play marvellously in the offensive third.
Like Cazorla, Tielemans is a marvel in possession of the ball and is particularly effective at scoring goals from a deeper position.
Last term, the 25-year-old found the net on seven occasions and also supplied five assists for his teammates during an impressive campaign.
With that in mind, it’s clear to see why he’s comparable to Arsenal’s Spanish magician, who contributed to 74 goals during his stint in the capital. The fact he was also dubbed an “elite-level distributor” by Statman Dave lends itself well to the comparison too.
Cazorla was a firm fan favourite in the eyes of many a supporter at the Emirates and it’s about time they replaced him adequately. Tielemans can do just that if he signs on the dotted line.