Madrid: Arsenal midfielder Santi Cazorla is leaving England to try to resurrect his career at his first club Villarreal after a serious Achilles tendon injury nearly ended his playing days.
"Santi Cazorla is coming home," the La Liga club said in a statement.
The 33-year-old, who played 77 times for Spain, has not played competitively since suffering the injury in a Champions League match for Arsenal against Ludgorets in October 2016.
The injury became infected and at one point doctors feared Cazorla's leg would need to be amputated.
Cazorla has fought his way back to fitness and recently posted a video showed him training with a ball.
He helped Arsenal lift two FA Cups, scoring a sublime free-kick in the 2014 final against Hull to spark Arsenal's comeback from two goals down to win 3-2 at Wembley.
He played 241 games for Villarreal and scored 34 times in two spells, from 2003 to 2006 and from 2007 to 2011.