Who Will Arsenal’s Next Captain Be?

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Jun 7, 2014; Landover, MD, USA; Spain midfielder Santi Cazorla (20) dribbles the ball against El Salvador at FedEx Field. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The captain of a team is the coach on the field. He is the voice of the coach when the coach is confined to screaming from the sidelines. He’s the voice of reason, always ready to stand up for his team mates and never afraid to calm them down when they’re getting out of hand.

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Essentially, the captain is the most crucial piece of the team on the field. Most of the big teams in the Premier League have easily recognizable captains. Chelsea have John Terry. Liverpool have Steven Gerrard. Manchester United have Wayne Rooney. But who do Arsenal have?

Mikel Arteta, with Per Mertesacker as a vice captain.

But then again, Arsenal haven’t treated the captaincy the same as the other big names teams in England. At least not lately. The captain is supposed to know the team and the players better than anyone else. As such, it may make sense to make the captain a long-tenured, pivotal player on the team, one who will be with the team for awhile and will therefore be able to grow into the role and control it.

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Arsenal’s captaincy spot has a been a death sentence lately. In fact, since the year 2000, Arsenal have had eight different captains. They haven’t had a captain serve longer than three years since Tony Adams (via Arsenal History). Compare that to Manchester United’s four captains since 2000 and Liverpool’s three.

Even Arsenal’s current captain, Mikel Arteta, has been hurt for a considerable amount of time and he’s had to pass off captaincy to Per Mertesacker. But Mertesacker is nearing thirty years of age and may even be on the brink of leaving, according to some sources. Arteta himself is turning 33-years of age soon and the time will come for a new captain. Is it time for Arsenal to hearken back to old times and find a long-term captain or will the spot continue to be more of an honorarium?

Maybe Arsene Wenger doesn’t view the captain spot as highly as some of the other top world football clubs do, or maybe he just hasn’t found the right one. Regardless, he has some pretty good captain candidates. Here’s a review of who we have that could potentially fill the role.

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