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Malaga move for Santi Cazorla in ~€25m deal

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Javier Camuñas scored a goal in his Villarreal debut yesterday against Wolfsburg.  First look at the new first team kit, too.  The friendly ended 2-2. (Photo by Ronny Hartmann/Bongarts/Getty Images)
Javier Camuñas scored a goal in his Villarreal debut yesterday against Wolfsburg. First look at the new first team kit, too. The friendly ended 2-2. (Photo by Ronny Hartmann/Bongarts/Getty Images)
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  Everyone--Radio Nou, Javi Mata on Radio Vila-real, and various journalists on twitter-- are now reporting that the deal between Málaga and Villarreal for the sale of Santi Cazorla is agreed and will close today or tomorrow at the latest.

   The terms of the deal appear to be closer to what Villarreal wanted than what was reported last night by the Malaga papers.  Javi Mata says the total will be more like €25-26 million but the final details are still being worked out.

   Assuming the salary reported by Sportyou is accurate, is appears Santi got what he wanted in terms of money, and frankly Villarreal appears to have gotten essentially what it wanted as well.  According to Javi Mata, the club was willing to sell one "crack";  Santi has been sold rather than Rossi because firstly, a team was willing to meet Villarreal's asking price, and secondly, the club felt it would be easier to replace him than Rossi.

    The Villarreal fanbase in Castellón is not happy; understandably so, since Santi has been a Villarreal player in one form or another since 2002 (except for one season when he was sold to Recreativo, then bought back).   Javi Mata has tweeted:

     Esta no es una decisión fácil, supongo que no se entiende. Yo solo os intento explicar como son las cosas.Y entiendo dudas y disgusto.

     (this wasn't an easy decision, I think that's not being understood.  I am just trying to explain how things are.  I understand your doubts and disgust)

    I think part of the anger (understandably) is that the message coming out of the club offices was that we would be a better club next year than last.  And until we see how the money from Santi's sale is going to improve the team, it's easy to be critical.

    As to whether Santi will be easier to replace than Rossi, that's a matter of opinion.  The replacement striker options sure didn't seem appealing, but when Santi is at his best he's pretty amazing.

    Javi Mata and everyone else have mentioned Canales, there were some reports that he was basically going to come to Villarreal if we had room for him.  Well, now we do, so let's see what happens.

    Santi's last appearance in a Villarreal uniform came yesterday in the 2-2 draw against Wolfsburg, when he played the second half.  New signing Javier Camuñas scored on his debut, so did Giuseppe Rossi, before Wolfsburg scored twice to come away with a draw.  Without Catala, Zapata, Gonzalo or Angel in the defense (and Marchena having just returned from personal leave) no one is going to be too concerned.  Now the team is home for a week before playing Lazio in the Ceramica Trophy.

    Meanwhile, the club is presenting Cristian Zapata to the press and fans today.  I think other events have overshadowed it.