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27 Goals In 159 Games – Is Miralem Pjanic A Perfect Replacement For Arsenal’s Cazorla?

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Arsenal injury woes have surfaced once again at a point when they need all of their key players available for selection. A couple of the Gunners first team members are on the treatment table, and that lack of depth seems to have remained an issue despite recent businesses done by the London club.

Part of those Arsenal badly miss is Spanish midfielder Santi Cazorla. The 32-year-old has been missing the action for a couple of weeks now, and that has had its toll on the club’s campaign. Since picking up an injury at the tail end of October, Arsenal have struggled for fluidity in play that he does injects into the games, having lost 2 games, drawn 4 and now at a huge risk of dropping off entirely from the title race.

The Spaniard is currently in his last year of his contract, and despite talks that he could get one more season as Arsenal plan to hand him an extension, the club have kept their eyes out for some like-for-like replacements. And one has been identified in Bosnia and Herzegovina midfielder Miralem Pjanic.

It is said that Wenger has personally gotten in touch with the Juventus midfielder, and is hoping a move works out soon in order to finally have someone able to cover for Cazorla and serve as a long-term replacement.

Xhaka and Ramsey have been deployed in the heart of midfield in Cazorla’s absence, but neither of them has been able to effectively fill his gap. The other option the Gunners have is on loan at Bournemouth.

Meanwhile, Pjanic is far more than capable of doing that job with ease, and if Arsenal do manage to convince Juventus into selling the player who arrived last summer from Roma on a 5-year deal, they can be rest assured of having the next Santi Cazorla in their hands.

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Pjanic’s brilliance in midfield in 5 seasons for Roma constantly attracted a lot of suitors across Europes, but it was fellow Serie A giants that wrestled him away after paying €32 million for his signature.

Primarily a centre midfielder, the 26-year-old also excels in a more advanced position due to his set-skills, but there shouldn’t be worries whether he is able to play deeper as he is fond of constantly dropping deep to receive the ball from the defence and launch an attack.

Like Cazorla, Pjanic has standout skills that include key passes and through balls. However, he is far better than the Spaniard on the set pieces considering that he is always a huge threat in direct free kicks. He is also a great dribbler and would frequently attempt long-range efforts at goal.

Considering that he has similar weakness in his defensive contributions – mainly tackling and aerial duels ( stands at 5′ 11′), Pjanic would also need a defensive midfielder beside him in Arsenal’s 4-2-3-1 formation peradventure he is eventually landed.

There is also the added goalscoring options he brings to the fore. The Bosnian scored 27 goals in 159 Serie A appearances for Roma, and already has 5 in 13 for the Old Lady this term, while assisting 4.

Not many players can perfectly replace Cazorla, but there might not be a better replacement than Miralem Pjanic out there. Signing him could make Arsenal’s title dreams come true.