Why Everton loanee should have received World Cup call-up – not Arsenal playmaker

Santi Cazorla Spain

Arsenal playmaker Santi Cazorla secured his place in Spain's World Cup squad this weekend – but should it have been Gerard Deulofeu instead?

Spain are gunning for an unprecedented fourth consecutive major trophy having won the European Championships in 2008 and 2012, as well as the World Cup back in 2010. In a squad of immensely talented players, it's always hard for players to stand out from the crowd and manager Vicente del Bosque regularly has difficult decisions to make.

In midfield, del Bosque has an embarrassment of riches. The likes of David Silva, Juan Mata, Cesc Fabregas and Koke join the usual faces of Sergio Busquets, Xabi Alonso, Xavi and Andres Iniesta to form one of the finest set of midfielders we're ever likely to see.

And one player you can add to that list is Arsenal's Cazorla, who was named in the squad this weekend – but can he count himself lucky to be on the plane to Brazil?

The former Villarreal and Malaga star enjoyed another successful season at the Emirates Stadium, scoring four goals and also making eight assists. Despite his good displays for Arsenal, he isn't expected to be an integral part of Spain's World Cup hopes – which makes his selection that much more puzzling.

Cazorla is on the plane to Brazil in place of Manchester City winger Jesus Navas, who has been ruled out of the tournament through injury. The former Sevilla man has been a regular in recent Spain squads because he offers direct pace down the right hand side – something that few players, including Cazorla can offer.

Cazorla more fits the the same mould as the likes of Silva and Mata; players who like the ball into feet, who can operate in tight areas around the edge of the box and who use their creativity to unlock defences. It's a tried and tested method for Spain, which has obviously worked so far, but this time it feels like they have simply too many players who do the same job.

Navas offered a Plan B when teams stacked the box. Direct running, speed and crossing in the box, yet with Cazorla they won't get that. The only other player in the squad who does do that is Barcelona's Pedro, which makes you wonder why Everton loanee Gerard Deulofeu didn't get the call-up.

The Barcelona starlet enjoyed a superb season at Goodison Park after arriving on loan from the Catalan giants, and his impressive displays led to a call-up to the preliminary squad for the World Cup. He may only be 20, but Deulofeu is the only other player who can replicate what Navas brought to his Spain team – which was hugely important in all their previous tournament successes.

Cazorla is obviously an outstanding player, but he doesn't offer Spain the same change of style that Navas or even Deulofeu can. Instead, he will most likely be sat watching Silva, Mata and Fabregas in his role – which could be a huge mistake from del Bosque.

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