EPL 2016-17: 5 choices for Arsenal club captain
The conclusion of 2015-16 EPL season saw Arsenal once again stutter in their quest to win the league. This time, there was no FA Cup triumph to appease the fans’ agony of seeing the same story repeating since the past decade. Pundits and fans alike have been questioning the lack of leaders in the squad to motivate and lead the team during crunch matches. Mikel Arteta was the designated club captain for the last couple of seasons. However, injuries meant he played in a total of 25 matches in those two seasons.
With his retirement, Arsenal now have a genuine chance of naming someone who can lead the side regularly and with authority. Given Arsenal’s history with injuries, a multiple captains system as followed by FC Barcelona and Manchester United last season can also be considered. With the Gunners playing their first pre-season football fixture on July 22nd against French second division outfit RC Lens, we look at the 5 possible candidates to don the captain’s armband for the upcoming 2016-17 EPL season.
5. Alexis Sánchez
Transferred from Barcelona in July 2014, Alexis Sánchez has been one of the best signings for Arsenal in recent years. He hit the ground running right from his first season and has scored 42 goals for the Gunners across the past two seasons. Further, the Chilean has won back-to-back Copa Americas with the national team in 2015 and 2016, including the Golden Ball for being the best player in the recently concluded Copa América Centenario. After a relatively injury-prone season with Arsenal, the Copa America success with Chile should do him a world of good in terms of confidence to get back to his best.
A truly world class player who can turn the game on its head, Alexis is one of the first names on the team-sheet. Along with that, he is a player with immense work-rate who hustles the opposition and is always known to leave everything on the pitch. This attitude with his ability makes him a good contender for the captain’s armband. However, having spent only two seasons at the club combined with the experience of other players on the list, he finds himself relatively down the pecking order at the moment.