That boy was screaming for Man United. In a tempestuous match, striker Eduardo had his leg broken following a tackle by Martin Taylor and James McFadden converted a late penalty conceded by Gael Clichy to see Arsenal drop two valuable points in their title battle with Man United. Was Mikel Arteta RIGHT to strip Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang of the Arsenal captaincy? He kept the captaincy after that fit of petulance but lost it in November that same year after giving an interview in which he revealed tensions in the dressing room and criticised younger players for lacking the necessary courage to succeed. But Emery wanted to do things slightly differently and democratised the captaincy by making a leadership group also featuring Petr Cech, Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil and Granit Xhaka. Swiss midfielder Xhaka, at the club since 2016, won the poll with the new leadership group consisting of Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette, chelsea jersey Ozil and Hector Bellerin.
However, foreshadowing his current stint as manager, Arteta showed plenty of leadership off the field, helping younger players such as Hector Bellerin feel at ease around the first-team group. He was susceptible to injury lay-offs, however, and by 2010 speculation was intensifying that he might return to boyhood club Barcelona. And in a recurring theme, and despite all these injury issues, Vermaelen made a £15m move that summer to, you’ve guessed it, Barcelona. When Arteta hung up his boots in 2016, Mertesacker was appointed captain despite the knowledge he would miss a large chunk of the following season with a knee injury. Almost immediately, he was ruled out for four months with a knee injury. And things started well enough in 2012-13 before the Belgian defender fell victim to the captain’s injury curse. The defender recovered to make a few more outings in 2017-18 but his role as captain was more as club figurehead than on-pitch leader.
An Arsenal player for three seasons and Van Persie’s vice-captain, Vermaelen seemed like a safe pair of hands for the role. He would ultimately seal his return to Barcelona, emulating Henry in being an Arsenal skipper who moved to the Nou Camp. The Frenchman did eventually return to the side but Arsenal could only finish fifth. Rejecting a new Arsenal contract in July 2012, he moved to Manchester United for an initial £22.5million in August in a colossal blow for Arsene Wenger and his team. Wenger made way for Unai Emery and the armband was passed on yet again, with Laurent Koscielny replacing his sometime central defensive partner Mertesacker. Part of the reason for that was Koscielny missed most of the first half of the season with a Achilles tendon rupture. Then, as has become familiar, everything went south with Koscielny refusing to travel on Arsenal’s pre-season tour of the United States in order to force through a move to Bordeaux. A week after being appointed though remains at the club despite being linked with a move away several times. However, former Crystal Palace chairman Jordan has moved to reassure fans that a sale is still indeed possible and has outlined how the club can come under new ownership despite the sanctions against Abramovich.
Though he was taken off, fans didn’t hold back on the Danish international as they criticised his performance on social media. Hillary Clinton: The Democratic presidential candidate topped the social media charts on both Facebook and Twitter, but not for the reasons she’d like. Team-mate Jens Lehmann later recalled: ‘After the match, he refused to leave the pitch and sat down in the centre circle like a sulky child. It’s like I have a little piece of you here with me. By the time of the FA Cup win in 2014, Arsenal’s first piece of silverware for nine long years, Vermaelen was no more than an unused substitute against Hull, with Mikel Arteta leading the team at Wembley. It will take more than a win of this nature, against a team reduced to ten men for the last 41 minutes, to put the harrowing 7-1 loss World Cup semi-final loss to Germany out of Brazil’s minds but Dunga said the win was a confidence booster. Rasmus Nissen Kristensen (Midtjylland, €5.5m) – The Danish right-back looked a strong prospect when he arrived from Danish club Midtjylland shortly after Ten Hag came in.
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