5 Arsenal signings from 2003-2005 who are still playing outside of England
Arsene Wenger's most notable achievement for Arsenal was probably the unbeaten campaign during the 2003/2004 Premier League season. He brought Arsenal to a whole new level and amazed the world with his tactics. During those glorious days, the French manager uncovered many talents and brought them in front of the world.
It is in Wenger's style to constantly trust his foresight. Once he feels that a certain player is good and talented, he will deploy him regardless of what happens. That has allowed him to give many chances to a couple of players and awarding them with the opportunities to shine.
The 68-year-old left the club at the end of last season but he has had a lasting impact on the club's legacy and the development of many of his signings. Wenger has a keen eye for youngsters and always enjoyed giving them the luxury of time to play in the senior first team. However, many of them eventually decided to leave Arsenal to further their careers. Although a handful has successful since making the switch, many have seen their market value decrease and were unable to live up to the expectations that Wenger once had for them. Here is a look at five signings from 2003-2005 who are still active in football but away from England.
#5 Gaël Clichy
The French defender spent eight years under Arsene Wenger. He first joined the Gunners in the year 2003 before leaving for Manchester City in 2011. For the early part of his career, he was used mainly as a back-up to Ashley Cole and he struggled to have much game-time.
In the 2007-2008 season, it was considered one of his best seasons as an Arsenal player. He managed to stay fit and appeared in all 38 league games. Over the span of eight years, Clichy made 264 appearances, scored two goals and created 11 assists. Thereafter, he left for rivals, The Citizens.
At the Etihad Stadium where Clichy spent six years playing, he achieved more than he did with Arsenal. He won two Premier League titles, scored three times and provided 14 assists. However, when he left for the North London club, things did not go well between the fans and him.
When Manchester City appointed Pep Guardiola as the new manager from the 2016/17 season onwards, the Spaniard told the 33-year-old honestly that he does not see a future for him at the club. The left-back ultimately left in 2017 on a free transfer to İstanbul Başakşehir on a three-year deal.
Thus far at his current club, Clichy has made 44 appearances in the Super Lig. During the period where Wenger was experiencing a crisis at the club, with many fans calling for him to be sacked, the French international got behind his former manager. He saw Wenger as the best man to guide and lead Arsenal. That has now changed as the board eventually decided to get Unai Emery as the new man to manage the boys at the club.
Although Clichy's club career has been a relative success, he hardly had the chance to shine on the international stage. He only represented France on 18 occasions. The last time he played for the national team was back in 2013 and he was left out of the 2014 World Cup squad for his country. Until today, there is no news on when he is hoping to retire. However, Clichy is still going strong playing in a less competitive league as compared to the EPL