Arteta named new Arsenal captain

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Arsene Wenger has confirmed that Mikel Arteta will be the club captain this season, with Per Mertesacker his vice-captain.

The Spaniard is one of the manager’s most trusted men, and his influence and leadership qualities – on and off the pitch – have convinced the Frenchman to give him the armband.

The former Everton man is greatly respected by the players and was a fairly obvious choice in the wake of Thomas Vermaelen’s departure.

Mertesacker as his second in command will ensure that the Arsenal dressing room is a place where discipline is key, but neither player would ever be accused of setting a poor example.

Congratulations to Mikel, and let’s hope that today’s trophy lifting is not the last of his tenure.

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Abhijith
Abhijith

YES MATE

Özil's Eyes on Arsene's Hot Thighs
Özil's Eyes on Arsene's Hot Thighs

Knowing Wenger, I would have been taken aback had he chosen differently….but then stranger things have happened this summer alone

Alex
Alex

Ridiculous, doesn’t deserve to start and the captains armband allows him to do that…

My Name is Difficult to Pronounce
My Name is Difficult to Pronounce

That’s why Vermaelen played so much?

captivajad
captivajad

“and the captains armband allows him to do that…”

Like in Vermaelen’s case?

Goontang
Goontang

To be fair, I know what hes talking about. I love Arteta and all, and he deserves the armband, but I would have preferred Mertersacker as captain to be honest. Simply for the reason that who knows how long arteta has got left in him. (I was sure I saw he only has 1 year left on his contract?).

Where Mertersacker is more a figure that could lead the Arsenal for years to come. Either way, the official title of who is and who is not captain should not make much of a difference. We have a wealth of experience in our team which was missing from recent years so we have plenty of leaders no matter who makes the team sheet.

Yoyo Sanogoals
Yoyo Sanogoals

But if we sign a DM, he’ll get benched and we’ll have another Vermaelen situation.

goonerbynature
goonerbynature

If by “Vermaelen situation” you mean a committed and quality player being kept out by other committed and quality players yet stepping up to the mark when called upon, I personally don’t mind a “Vermaelen situation.”

Mootilated
Mootilated

I think his point is that it would have been useless to make Arteta captain if we had a DM coming in to replace him. Which is true. Would have preferred if Mertesacker got it, but we only see what goes on on the Pitch.

Zelalem
Zelalem

Adding to that, we won’t sign a new DM

vnet
vnet

I could be wrong, but making arteta captain indicates to me that we wont be signing a world class CDM this season.

Fattcheeked
Fattcheeked

We were never going to get a “world class” CDM. The only world class ones are Busquets, Javi Martinez and to an extent Mascherano. The obsession with the term “world class” has to stop. And making Arteta captain doesn’t mean we won’t get a DM if AW wants a DM.

Gooner1981
Gooner1981

Well, Arteta could always play alongside a CDM, or even push forward. That’s where he really made his name. At the very least, with his Xavi-esque passing, he would circulate possession, something Flamini fails to do. There are only maybe a handful of teams where Arteta’s lack of pace is really exposed. Otherwise, he’s quite a good foil to our more attack-minded players.

goonerbynature
goonerbynature

Using Arteta as a CM is slightly pointless. He doesn’t quite have the legs to burst into the box on a regular basis (albeit probably the best long shots in the squad bar Podolski), so he’d crowd out Ramsey/Wilshere.

Daniel
Daniel

I’m a fan of this

elmeliac
elmeliac

I hope he grows a hilarious captain beard.

NJ Gooner
NJ Gooner

Based on his hair, “hilarious” is one word that could not be used to describe any beard he might grow.

Fireman Sam
Fireman Sam

You can get Lego beards – my kid has a Lego pirate and a Lego hagrid

Ciaran
Ciaran

Personally I would have chosen bfg. He is going to get more minutes on the pitch than arteta and could possibly be around longer than arteta. Having said that…. Arteta does have all the qualities to be a great captain and I hope he keeps fit and keeps performing well.

Bould's Eyeliner
Bould's Eyeliner

Captain of the club and captain on the pitch, slight difference. BFG is vice captain anyway so he’ll probably be captain on the pitch if Arteta does not play.

guyfawkes
guyfawkes

Top, top professional Arteta. Love the guy, but if I’m being totally honest, we needed an upgrade to him, especially in the big games where he is easily run over.

William Carvalho could’ve been that final piece, but looks like Wenger is happy with Arteta.

But hell, with an attack like that, there’s no wrong in believing.

Bring it, new season!

goonerbynature
goonerbynature

While it’s true that Arteta can occasionally lacks the legs, I think we’re feeding a little too much into media hype if we think that a lack of a big tough DM is the reason we got battered.

We coped more than competently against the same top sides at home (and indeed, Dortmund and Bayern away) and yet given that those sides would tend to play more on the counter-attack at their own home grounds than at the Emirates (comparatively), the argument that they all score by running faster than Arteta doesn’t hold.

We could definitely improve by having an extra body there, but it’s slightly simplistic to say that alone will solve our troubles away. Playing like we did today, with plenty of running but also intelligent movement and accurate passing under pressure rather than constantly giving the ball away as we did in those losses, would ensure that any DM we did have (Arteta or Carvalho or Schneiderlin or whoever the papers are talking about today) would have less of a burden.

Joeos
Joeos

Thank you for this intelligent analysis rather than repeating the media and internet bs about the reason for the Liverpool and Chelsea defeats. Brazil only conceded 7 against Germany with a “world class DM”. Arteta was excellent today and given his experience and intelligence, coupled with the respect that the other players have for him, he will play the majority of games this season.

goonerbynature
goonerbynature

Quick correction: I meant “those sides would tend to play more on the counter-attack at the Emirates than their own home grounds (comparatively)”, in that they’re more proactive at home.

Gooner '75
Gooner '75

No big shock. Bfg for me though- aerial views an that.

wayne
wayne

At the end of the day when he’s not on the pitch bfg will be, either man as captain will do me..

Randy Paul
Randy Paul

This is great news! I would have loved to have Per as the Captain but this makes a lot of sense as well

Petit's Handbag
Petit's Handbag

Alex mate, are you one of these people who wonder why we don’t sign Messi??

CB
CB

Once we sign Hummels, the BFG’s place will be under threat…

According to the Laws of Quantum Mechanics, WENGA can be OUT and IN at the same Time
According to the Laws of Quantum Mechanics, WENGA can be OUT and IN at the same Time

Congrats to Mikel!

Whoever has the time, search back the AN archives and see that someone suggested it was risky giving the armband to Vermaelen was when Arsene named him a captain and got thumbed down to oblivion.

Let that be a lesson. Think before you Thumb 🙂

Anonymous Physicist
Anonymous Physicist

Well, it wasn’t risky. Vermaelen was an excellent captain when he was playing, and a great professional when he wasn’t.

A Yank In King Arsene's West Stand
A Yank In King Arsene's West Stand

Some very nice messages from Vermaelen on Facebook and Twitter just now. I really do wish him all the best. And I hope twats like Nasri take note that leaving Arsenal isn’t what gets you booed like a panto villain, behaving like a little shite does. (Has he never noticed that no one boos Clichy?)

Anyway, best of luck to our new skip and vice-skip, and to our just-departed skip. I’m proud to have humble, hard workers representing the club.

Asat
Asat

Definitely, you missed when Clichy’s name was announced before Kickoff Today!

deano

Thought he did a good job on the pitch last year so fair do’s. Played well today looked a little sharper and fitter I think we could have a great season.

Merlin's Panini
Merlin's Panini

I would’ve liked to see Per as captain but it wouldn’t really be fair to overlook the guy who was playing as captain pretty much all of last season. Arteta deserves it really.
I would assume this means no extra defensive midfielder arriving but stranger things have happened I suppose. I think we’ll just see a centre back arrive and that’ll be our lot.

Brian
Brian

Good call……he should have an armband made of Lego?

fury
fury

You can say all you want, Arteta is the captain and thats it!!

Mickey sloan
Mickey sloan

Mr Wenger.
Could I ask you to take a minute to talk about one aspect of your management that I am a loss to explain. Simply put, could you watch Mikel Arteta.
I think that you should look at the stats regarding our heaviest defeats last season. Look at the way that Arteta played in those games. He isn’t doing the DM job. He is also slow in the transition from defence to attack. He isn’t young anymore and like most sportsmen in the twilight of their careers you find that mentally as well as physically they don’t take as many gambles? Mikel plays it safe and his stats prove it, very few passes forward and most between him and Mertesacker. But at a high level it is those moments when a gamble is played that pays the best dividends, where top players have confidence to play quicker, more direct passes.
He cannot play with Flamini. Flamini is much more aware of protecting the back four and Arteta forces him forward instead of where he should be. It must be Flamini or Arteta in this case. There are certain mentalities regarding wanting the ball from defence. They can make amazing space for the midfield if they are cute. Fabregas was the master. Wanting the ball from defence and mugging a squeezing opposition player so he is reluctant to spend energy doing it again. I suggest that it can simply be one very good professional at his job that can stop the implosion of goals against playing the better teams. I have nothing against Arteta and I think he’s a good player but he isn’t a defender and I’m afraid to say it but he is our weak link.
Regards
Arsenal Fan

Joeos
Joeos

You are completely incorrect in your analysis and Wenger is correct, as usual.

I want to boff Sanogo and I'm not even gay
I want to boff Sanogo and I'm not even gay

Fair play to Mikel. He’s been such an important signing for the club. Sure, he’ll not win you a title on his own, but he gives a hell of a lot of fucks about the club, he came when we were at an all time low and rolled his sleeves up and fought his arse off week in week out. I’m really pleased for him and hope he can lift a few more cups before he goes.

moral high ground
moral high ground

Makes me feel queasy. I was hoping to see far less of Arteta this season. I do think he is a relatively weak link in the team. This makes me queasy he will play a lot. Great squad player but is it really too much to ask to give the captain’s armband to someone who unquestionably is a first 11 starter?!

eternalflamini
eternalflamini

This is becoming like the Defence Against the Dark Arts position at Hogwarts.

MTZ
MTZ

For all intents and purposes he was already the captain on the pitch last year, and as our captain has already brought us the FA Cup. It is now highly unlikely that we’ll sign a DM, but you know what? I don’t really care. Arteta was as consistent as ever today, and certainly showed no signs of being too old or slow against the likes of Navas, Toure and Silva.

At any rate, congratulations to Arteta for finally being the official captain. Well earned!

Strevs
Strevs

Happy with either him, or Per as captain.
I personally think this may be Arteta’a best year yet.
I felt he was slow and ponderous last year, and we could upgrade, but he was far better with Ramsay than without (Arteta’s bad patch coincided with Ramsey’s injury in my opinion) and having had a full summers rest, more dynamic players around him and another years experience, I expect him to step up.

Moral high ground
Moral high ground

I think to say we don’t care that he may not be consistent enough to lead us to the title because he is a good guy and clearly a top pro (and a fine player) is defeatist. I like the way this squad is coming together but in the last 2 seasons I think arteta’s weaknesses (lack of physicality esp late in games, zero pace, propensity for silly costly fouls) grow steadily more evident. I worry he will get more games now than he deserves. Without talking about possible signings I know nothing about for DM I think Flamini is a better player on that position. On a good day for us this is a bit of a sour note…..

Crew
Crew

On a side note – My god, how good has Gibbs been in the last 2 seasons? Much better Defensively than Baines and Shaw, while also good going forward. Academy player, English and a Gooner! Such an asset at left back.

CantWait
CantWait

Arteta is in the last year of his contract and may be leaving after this season. Maybe Wenger sees him as a perfect short term captain option until Ramsey is ready to take over for next year. If Ramsey is named vice-vice-captain then I think we’ll have our answer..

Bigcity
Bigcity

Love Mikel as a professional but think we need a captain who the other players know not only is a fixture in the starting eleven but deserves to be there. Almost seems a easy/lazy choice but then again I’m not in the locker room. Here’s hoping Arsene had a chat with a few of the boys before making this call

Trez
Trez

In other words wenger’s indirectly saying we’re not signing a dm…big surprise.

Daft Aider
Daft Aider

Arteta, Mertesacker are both worthy captains, I would have had it the other way around but I won’t complain – good choice

santori
santori

NO surprise to anyone other than those spouting the ‘we need a effing big atheletic DM mantra”

1) Arteta will be our top asset in the middle. he hasn’t put a foot wrong. He is also captain. replacing someone familiar to the 2 main Cbacks this late into season is risky at best no matter how strapping the new DM may be.

2) Flamini and Chambers are viable back up for one position. There is also Diaby of course. he may leave if a buyer is found but that would be difficult indeed on account of his injury prone nature. Otherwise he will be another asset for us either as link in competitoin with Ramsey, Jack and Rosicky or as a 4th choice DM. We have plenty in midfield.

3) We desperately need a Quality Cback. Comes as no surprise as Vermaelen was not good enough to rotate through Metersceilny. We were fortunate with the injury gods last season that we did not lose Giroud or either of Meterscielny to injury. I hope we go for someone like Hummels and compete for his signature against United. They have no CL and we do courtesy of the much derided fourth spot pot. 25 to 30m minus vermaelen’s fee = 10 to 15m for a very good defender who is 25 and mid way in median age between the up coming possibilities of Miquel, Chambers or hayden and the aging pair of Per and Koscielny

4) Giroud. More derision poured on a striker who frankly scored more than Cavanni or Negredo and had a healthy assist rate to boot. Fantastic goal today but won’t silence the numpties still questioning his ability. Still if we find a striker last minute, I’d take one on. Sanogo is very promising but frankly it would do him best to be out on loan playing as regularly as possible. The likes of Falcao and Cavanni are still a little unsettled. It isn’t an area we need to add urgently on account of the lively Campbell but if we can grab one for price at end of window, it would be the right thing to do IMO.

catbiscuits
catbiscuits

I don’t see how it’s “spouting a mantra” to want a high quality central midfielder brought in. At the moment we have Ramsey, and potentially Wilshere (if he stays fit and can recapture his earlier form, and if CM rather than the 10 position is his best role).

Arteta, Flamini, etc. are good players, but I don’t think there’s much doubt that they’re the weak link in the starting 11 (one of them will play, as it stands).

I think at the moment we’re in danger of:

1) overplaying Ramsey
2) being hit on the break / getting overrun by top quality, pacey sides (again)

I don’t think it’s outrageous to suggest that a top central midfielder would help a lot.

Matthew
Matthew

Call me cynical, but while I think Arteta is a perfect fit to be our new captain, I wish Wenger had gone for longevity with Mertesacker. Arteta has all the traits to be a great captain, but I fear he won’t be around for much longer and within 18 months or so we’ll have to choose a new one.

jw
jw

Can I ask as its a comment I have seen posted a lot now…

Why does it matter if Arteta has been named captain only to be allowed to leave next summer? Did I miss the rule where it stipulates that captains must maintain the responsibility for 10 years? So what if it is only for one year, I don’t get this whole, it should have been Per for longecity bullshit. It does not matter in the slightest if we have to change our captain next season again, not.one.bit.

Arteta was the de facto captain last year with TV5 not playing most of the time, fact is Arteta deserves to be our captain. He was an important part in our cup final victory last year lest some of you forget that, and has represented the club with class and quality over the last 3 years.

Matthew
Matthew

I’m not saying it’s a bad thing Arteta has the armband – I think he deserves it as much as you do.
But “longevity” does matter. In my opinion having a captain who is around for a while is much healthier than replacing a captain every 12 months or so. It provides stability and continuity.