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The centre-back has praised his Spanish team-mate after the midfielder grabbed two goals against Aston Villa, including an 85th minute winner as Arsenal push for third place

Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker says midfielder Santi Cazorla is the "perfect footballer" after the Spaniard scored twice in a 2-1 win on Saturday against Aston Villa.

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7/4 Santi Cazorla is 7/4 to be Arsenal's top Premier League goalscorer this season with BetVictor
Cazorla was in fine form once again for the Gunners who face Tottenham at White Hart Lane in next Sunday's north London derby and Mertesacker is hoping his Spanish team-mate's ability can fire them to third place.

"You see he takes his chances with his technique and his feeling," Mertesacker told the club's official website. "He is the perfect footballer. He has the technique to score goals and that's what we need after losing the last two home games.

"There was a bit of pressure but we are on a good run in the league so just needed to focus on that. It was a very important [result].

"We want to climb up the league into the top four," he said. "That's our target for the next couple of weeks. We have enough games to achieve that.

"We're looking at what Tottenham can do at West Ham on Monday and then we have the derby and we want to go on like [against Villa]."

Arsenal are on a good run of form in north London derbies, beating Tottenham 5-2 in their previous two games at the Emirates Stadium, and Mertesacker wants more of the same.

"The last two home games against Tottenham were absolutely fantastic," he added. "We try to keep that in our mind and want to achieve the same things, to score goals.

"If we play our game properly, we can compete with every team in the Premier League. That's what we need next Sunday."

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