When Henry was made captain, everyone agreed. He was our best player, at the time and arguably ever. When Fabregas was made captain, almost everyone agreed. He was our best player at the time. When van Persie was made captain, people didn’t really know what to think, and personally, I still don’t know what to think. I personally believe a midfielder should be captain, due to them being the link between the attack and defense.
My favourite captain apart from Tony Adams, who was our most successful captain ever, was Vieira. He controlled the game, he then defended and attacked. And he wasn’t quiet like Fabregas and now Van Persie are. He would scream at players he thought were lacking concentration and weren’t in the game. He was a leader, even though he seems to have abandoned the team that made him for €ity, just for the pay cheque, some of my respect for him has gone I’m very very sorry to say.
The major contender for the captaincy is Vermaelen. The centre back that joined from Ajax, where he was captain, in 2009. Ever since joining Arsenal, he has caused a fresh argument for Premier League fans to have, who is the best centre back in the league? Every Arsenal fan surely says Thomas, because he is. Vidic is over rated, end off, John Terry is good, ignoring personal matters, he’s good, but getting on a bit now, Kompany, ok he lead his team to the league title, but millions of pounds were invested in that team. In my opinion, he shouldn’t even be in the argument.
Vermaelen acts like a leader. He has been sent off once, against West Ham, which wasn’t a red card! When he was injured during the 2010 / 2011, he made two appearances, the last two games of the season, a defeat to Aston Villa, and a draw against Fulham. Against Fulham, he played better than Vidic and Terry had the whole season, I remember him blocking every attacker, and clearing it off the line with ease. We struggled the whole season, as he was our only solid centre back at the time. We would have still struggled with two solid centre backs, he would have improved them who ever they are, Vidic, Terry or Pique.
I believe Vermaelen should be captian, vice captain already, so is Wenger’s prime candidate for the captaincy, and to be honest he deserves it, but would he need it, or could the whole squad benefit from someone else having the captaincy?
Mikel Arteta. Some fans had questions over his signing on deadline day in 2011. Well, what can we say almost a year later? One of Wengers best signings of the decade, up there with Fabregas and Nasri. He controlled the games for us, something Nasri didn’t, and couldn’t do probably. When he joined Arsenal, he said he wasn’t bought to replace Fabregas, but I think he has to be honest, and we couldn’t have bought anyone who would have played better for us. After ten eleven games for us, he was an integrated part of Wenger’s Arsenal set up. He is going to be a major part of the team for next seasons title challenge.
I believe Arteta, along with his developed partnership with Song that won us almost seventy percent of our games (Arteta didn’t play a few games due to injury), link the attack and defence, and can lead a team that may have three new starters and youth in, who need leadership. Arteta has been in the Premier League for seven years, as long as any other player in our squad. This means he has experience, more than Arteta. He has so much experience and quality, he was voted Sky Sports midfielder of the year in 2007, beating Ronaldo, Gerard, Fabregas, Lampard etc. We was voted Everton’s player of the year 2006 and 2007, and Everton’s Players Player of the year 2006, as well as North West player of the year 2007. I know this means nothing, but he knows seven languages as well.
I heard a story about Arteta, about when he first joined Arsenal. He noticed that when the players were relaxing and had their own time after training, how the squad would split up into separate groups, something he believes lowers the teams chemistry on the pitch, and addressed Van Persie about the problem. If anything was done about it I do not know, but this shows a sign of a leader. Worrying about the teams togetherness off the pitch, not just on the pitch.
I believe he is a very strong contender to be captain, Wenger surely must discuss it with him, he will defiantly make him at least vice captain. The simple fact is, Vermaelen leads the squad naturally, he does it now, even if he isn’t captain, but Arteta would feel he could say something to lead the team, although can’t now too much due to him only being at Arsenal for just over eleven months, and not being the captain.
There are other contenders for the captaincy, Song for example. Song has been in the team for seven years, and is also a integrated part of the Arsenal set up. He controls the game like Arteta, he provides amazing assists, and is rarely tackled on the ball. He can also play at centre back when asked, and regularly goes and defends when the other team are attacking. He then starts the attack. This is a vital part of Wenger’s set up, and he may deserve the captaincy in some peoples eyes. There are emerging rumours of Song moving to Barcelona, hopefully there is no truth in it, and if there is truth, that he would be loyal to the team that have given him everything. Something Van P€r$i€ hasn’t done.
Other candidates for the captaincy include Sagna, Koscielny, I’ve heard someone say it should be the player bought to replace the current captain, Giroud! Sagna firstly, has been at Arsenal since 2007, and has been our best defender apart from Vermaelen for a long time. Since his arrival, he immediately became our first choice right back. When he has been injured we have struggled, although that could be due to us not having a solid second choice right back, usually a centre back has to fill in, and in the game against Sunderland, as he broke his leg, Koscielny. He is a great player, one of the best right backs in the league. He doesn’t score yet although he does provide some great assists. He doesn’t seem to be very vocal on the pitch, but seems to concentrate a lot so can’t worry about speaking to other people. This is the only reason I personally wouldn’t make him captain, although he may deserve it.
Koscielny joined Arsenal in 2010 in July, only a few days after the window opened. He started poorly, getting sent off against Liverpool. His season began to have highs and lows, scoring against Bolton, but the lowest of lows was against Birmingham. We had barely got through against Ipswich, having to play Fabregas against them, embarrassing. Leading up to the game, every one said, watch Zigic, his height will cause the smaller defenders trouble. He scores. Van Persie pulls us back into it, but in the 89th minute, a mix up with Koscielny and Szczesny meant we lost the game and our trophy drought continued.
But then last season changed for the young French defender. The whole team were at fault for the poor start of the season, but when the team began to gel, Koscielny and Vermaelen’s partnership really became apparent, and Koscielny changed from a vulnerable young defender, to a strong solid player. He had to play on the left on the right for some games due to all of our full backs being injured at the same. He dealt with his well, although Mertesacker left a whole in the centre of the defence, for example Norwich.
The defence lined up ‘Koscielny Vermaelen Mertesacker Santos’. When Norwich scored it was due to Mertesackers mistake, but when Koscielny saw what was going on he moved across into the centre to help out the centre backs, while protecting the right flank. Captains actions surly? Once again, the only reason I wouldn’t make him captain is because he doesn’t seem to shout orders out in a game like Vermaelen. Team have more than one vice captain, he could be one along with who ever isn’t captain, Arteta or Vermaelen.
I would really make Arteta the captain, due to Vermaelen leading from the back anyway. He is a solid player and even though he hasn’t been at Arsenal for a year, he deserves it. He is the perfect player to have it, as he will be able to tell the players how they can improve their performances on and off the field. I hope that either Vermaelen or Arteta is captain, they both deserve it and Wenger has defiantly got to consider both of these players. Hopefully the next captain won’t leave, and lead us to a trophy. Van Persie is, and I suppose soon it will be wasn’t, a good captain anyway. A striker should never be captain, especially a very un-flexible one like Van Persie. I think Giroud will be better than him, so I personally say good riddance to him. We don’t need the money from his transfer, we should keep him sitting on the bench next year and someone can have him for free, a 30 year old, injury prone and will have no resale value and will want £200,000 a week. He will never be bigger than Arsenal.
Written by Miles