Pitchside Europe

Why Arsenal don’t need Cesc Fabregas to return


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If there is one transfer that might enrage Arsenal fans more than Robin Van Persie’s switch to Manchester United last summer, it would be to see Cesc Fabregas joining the Dutchman at Old Trafford.

Barcelona have so far insisted that Fabregas will not be sold, especially after the departure of Thiago Alcantara, but Arsenal are monitoring the situation just in case the midfielder is allowed to leave. However, recent reports have suggested that Arsenal are looking at Brazilian international Bernard to fulfil a playmaking role in the Gunners' attack.

Clearly if Fabregas is going to move anywhere, Arsenal fans would want it to be back to the Emirates, but as they already have Santi Cazorla, could it be argued that Arsenal don’t desperately need their former captain?

Cazorla enjoyed a stunning debut season in the Premier League, finishing with a Performance Score of 2737, the second highest total of any player in Europe.

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Fabregas’ own score of 1825 is also excellent, but the Barcelona was left trailing in Cazorla’s wake in almost every important category last season. The Arsenal player scored 12 goals to Fabregas’ 11, created 95 chances compared to Cesc’s 50, and won a higher percentage of his duels with 69% to 57%.

Fabregas did have a slightly higher pass completion rate, with 89% compared to Cazorla’s hardly slapdash 87%, but it is notable that the Arsenal player passed the ball forward more frequently, with 65% of his passes going forward to Fabregas’ 57.4%.

Santi Cazorla: Average Pass Direction

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Fabregas had another fine season at Barcelona, but considering Arsenal’s need for a new striker and defensive midfielder, they would be unwise to spend big on their former player when they already have Cazorla on the books at the Emirates.

Having enjoyed a wonderful debut season at Arsenal, there is every chance that Cazorla could get even better next year and be just as influential to Arsenal as Cesc was a few years ago to The Gunners.

From Squawka.com - Team and Player football stats

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