Arsenal are plotting end of season talks with Santi Cazorla ahead of a proposed reunion in the summer, but exactly in what form is unclear.
The popular Spaniard left Arsenal in 2018 when his contract expired, but he had not featured for the club since October 2016.
Cazorla's time in London was blighted by injuries. His Achilles tendonitis required eight surgeries, followed by a traumatic recovery that saw him come close to requiring amputation.
Cazorla made an emotional comeback in the summer of 2018 with Villarreal - the club he had kick-started his professional career with.
However, as his final two years in north London were spent on the treatment table, Cazorla never had the opportunity to say a proper farewell to the Arsenal faithful.
According to a report in football.london, the Gunners are exploring the logistics of bringing the midfielder back in some capacity to say his goodbyes.
Arsenal's head of football, Raul Sanllehi, has had contact with the player's agent, with a plan being cooked up at the end of the season.
Cazorla is out of contract with Villarreal in the summer, but at 35, it is unlikely he would return to Arsenal as a player - despite his success in La Liga.
An end of season testimonial is also looking less likely due to the coronavirus outbreak pushing the season back.
Alternative suggestions include inviting Cazorla to watch a match from the stands, before being presented to the supporters at half time, or including his next team in the next Emirates Cup - the annual pre-season competition hosted by the Gunners.
Cazorla has made no secret of his desire to return to Arsenal at some point. Speaking to Goal in January, he said: “I don't know if it's possible or not, but I want to play one more game for Arsenal before I retire.
“I’m proud that I was an Arsenal player. I'm especially grateful for Arsenal fans who supported me even after I left the club.
“I wish I can be part of the Gunners family in the future again."
Cazorla could return to Arsenal in a coaching role, and reunite with former teammate Mikel Arteta, but Spanish football journalist Guillem Balague says he wants two more years playing first.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, Balague said: “Going back to Arsenal with Arteta is something that I think he will consider as a coach.
“I asked him about it, he said yes, he will consider as a coach when he retires but he wants to play for two more years."
Source : 90min