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How Unai Emery’s Arsenal Captaincy Decision Should Have Gone Down Rather Than the Shambles That Actually Happened

Arsenal captaincy, Xhaka

The question of the Arsenal captaincy has been rumbling on for a while and it’s gathering momentum again on social media.

Now it appears that Unai Emery has let the players choose who they want in the position.

There will be five in total, five ? That’s half the team give or take a decimal point, in a country where democracy has found itself slightly surplus to requirements, Arsenal have decided to put it to a vote.

I’m still a believer in a captain and vice captain, so under those rules, I’ll look at the candidates.

If age were not such a big obstacle, then perhaps we could include the three amigo’s, Holding, Bellerin and Guendouzi.

Let’s exclude the latter because he is only just finding his feet and is only 20 years of age, but he’s certainly a Arsenal captaincy candidate for the future. However, he is one of a few that displays passion and desire and is often visibly angry at mistake, which should be the natural reaction of any player in red and white.

Hector Bellerin is another good candidate, but he needs to cement himself back in the side after a long lay off but you can’t question the Spaniards commitment, it’s simply beyond reproach.

Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images

With Rob Holding, the same thing applies with the injury situation, but you get the impression that if he’s given the role, he would make it his own. Quite how the older, more experienced players would react to a rollicking from a younger player might be interesting but again, he is an extremely well liked player within the group and is someone that can mix his game when required.

Holding is probably the choice of a selection of Gunners fans for the Arsenal captaincy, not because he’s English, because he has appetite and desire.

Holding said:

“If I am named as one of the five captains, I’ll be more than honoured. Being captain of Arsenal would be an unbelievable feeling.”

David Luiz probably has the highest credentials of all the senior players in terms of experience at every level and because of his accomplishments in the game, but his arrival in the summer may make him a slight outsider. I think he’d be perfect for the role, especially if Emery were to push him further up field into the holding midfielder role.

Aubameyang is surely going to be high on the list for his energy and ability. The likeable striker has the ability to impact on a game the way a captain should, but I’m not in favour of strikers in the role because of their limited perspective. Much better a defender or midfielder in my opinion.

Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Lacazette could be another option but again, the position for me is the problem, not the player or his contribution.

I support Unai Emery, but I find his obsession with five captains ludicrous and ridiculous in equal measure. It devalues the privilege of leadership, but football rarely throws up leaders like it once used to.

Even the decision to leave the choice to the players is strange. The captain should be the reflection of the manager on the field. He should be the general in his absence and try to ensure his will is done.


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Try to name five outstanding captains in the Premier League and you’ll be there a while. At international level they are as rare as diamonds in an allotment.

Online forums have Aubameyang in front for Arsenal captaincy and that’s probably as good a barometer as any. The fans often think along the same line as the players, but are less inclined to agree with a coach who installed Ozil and Xhaka.

That is probably his worst decision in his entire career as coach. As for me and my own personal choice, I’d vote for Rob Holding, someone who will be key as the young guns come through from the academy.

Stay Tuned to know more!

The Highbury Flyer
Anti Kroenke , anti Gazidis but always a gooner. Still wishes he could watch from the stands at the Highbury library.

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