Arsenal’s official matchday programme for tomorrow’s clash with Burnley will not include the traditional notes from the captain because Unai Emery is yet to make a decision on who should take over from Laurent Koscielny.
It was widely anticipated that whoever filled the editorial void left by the Frenchman would be appointed his successor to the armband but instead, Granit Xhaka will provide a column under the ghoulish title ‘a voice from the dressing room’.
There'll be no official captain's notes in the Arsenal match programme against Burnley tomorrow. Granit Xhaka will be writing a piece as a "voice from the dressing room".
— James Benge (@jamesbenge) August 16, 2019
Unai Emery has said that he’d like to appoint up to five captains for the upcoming season with the Swiss, Mesut Ozil and Nacho Monreal taking up three of the spots.
The Spaniard has also suggested that he’d like an English voice to play a prominent role, however, because the transfer window remains open for clubs on the continent he seems to be waiting until he is 100 per cent sure who will make up his squad before making a final decision.
Xhaka gave an interview to Arsenal Player earlier in the week, in which he said: “I missed this place if I’m honest. I missed the guys, I missed the ball and it’s exciting to be back and working again to make a great season.
“I think this season won’t be easy, but we know each other more and the coach knows the players better. We know him, what he wants, the mentality of the staff and as I’ve said before, I’m so excited because this is the second year now under Unai Emery and we want to make a good season this year.”
We suspect it’s this chat that has made it into print.
Not having a confirmed captain isn’t a huge deal, but at the same time, we’re not really sure why Emery is dilly-dallying over the appointment.
Personally, we’re sad that Gunnersaurus has been overlooked as a temporary captain. But there we go.