Arsene Wenger believes that Santi Cazorla is back at his very best after scoring a brace against Fulham and expects the Spaniard to return to being the player he was when he joined the club last season.
The 29-year-old has been plagued with injuries, missing a major chunk of the start of the season owing to an ankle injury. Since his return, he has failed to live up to the same standards as last season, when he scored 12 goals and assisted 11 while starting almost every Premier League game for the Gunners.
His tally thus far this season has been less than exemplary, scoring three goals and assisting two while starting only 15 league games thus far.
However, Wenger believes that the nimble footed Spaniard has managed to shrug off his injury worries which has troubled him throughout the season and the fans will be able to enjoy his true quality as the season moves into the second half.
The Gunners are currently top of the table, one point ahead of Manchester City and two ahead of Chelsea and need their top guns back into full fitness if they have to secure their place at the top.
The north London club next play Southampton, whom they have already beaten at home earlier in the season but need three points from this fixture to keep the pressure on the title contenders.
"Santi got two and that is a sign he is coming back to his level because for a big part of the season he had some injury problems. "Since mid-December he has been coming back to his best," Wenger told www.arsenal.com.
"He was injured for a while, after that he had an ankle problem for a period and couldn't hit the ball properly with his right foot.
"Santi is about using two legs, you don't know really if he is right or left footed and once he cannot do that as freely as he is used to he has a handicap. He had that for a long time this season," he concluded.