Emery’s decision on the Arsenal captaincy raises more questions than answers

Under Arsene Wenger, we all got used to having a non-playing official captain of the Arsenal squad, and then the vice-captain would be the next most senior player. Well it looks like we are going to keep the tradition of the non-playing captain but Emery refuses to name a vice-captain!

“The captain of this group is Laurent Koscielny, who is injured at the moment,” Emery told Arsenal.com. “After Laurent, our other captains are Petr Cech, Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil and Granit Xhaka.

“I want leaders in the team, every player at every time to have the capacity to show leadership, but these are the five players who have a possibility to be the captain.”

So El Coach still hasn’t told us who will be wearing the armband against Man City. Does the inclusion of Petr Cech on that list mean that he will still be our first choice Number One until Leno settles in?

Does having Ramsey on that list mean that he will definitely be signing a new contract? But, even then, the Welshman is not certain to be starting the game tomorrow after coming back from injury..

And is Xhaka even going to be a certainty for the starting XI? Ramsey, Torreira, Guendouzi, Mhki, Ozil and Maitland-Niles have as much claim to a starting spot. In fact I would say Ozil is the only one on the captain list that is certain to start when fit.

Tomorrow’s team sheet is going to be very interesting indeed!



  1. Innit says:

    I’m fine with Koscielny, Cech and Ramsey but not sure about Ozil and Xhaka. Ozil is not the Captain type. A captain should be a FIGHTER. Ozil is too lazy to be a captain. of Xhaka I would have put Aubameyang

    1. l says:

      You probably didn’t see how Ozil scolded Belerin on the field in a match last season for ‘talking too much’. Many a time he has been let down by lack of technical know how in ball retention and distribution by his team mates, causing him to loose his influence. At the end he receives the blames for team failures. I believe, from what I have seen from Torreira’s passing ability in training, we will see the best of Ozil. Reminds me of Carzola’s partnership with him.

    2. Kenny Rolfe says:

      Innit, how can you include Ramsey? he doesn’t want to play for us anymore. He got through the last transfer window and is looking to leave on a free. When the next window comes around he’ll have six months left on his contract and I believe he’s then allowed to talk to any club he wishes. It’s then that he’ll arrange his next deal. Put him in the reserves. Can’t you see? he’s conned us.

      1. Andrew E says:

        Fully agree, I have made the same points on a few occasions. I think Emery should give him 2 weeks to make up his mind, he’s had enough time.

    3. D says:

      ” Ozil is too lazy” Again, another laughable display of ignorance when it comes to posters on this blog attacking our own players. I suggest you actually look at Ozils numbers of kilometers ran per game before claiming he is lazy. Had you actually done your own research instead of regurgitating the nonsense that you read in the papers you would find the Ozil is actually one of the least lazy players in the whole of the PL when it comes to distance covered.

      It also proves that you’ve never even watched a match in real life, as only then do you get a true understanding of how much work Ozil puts in for this team.

    4. sal says:

      i think it was clever of emery innit !! its a core of players from gk to attack hopefully this way everyone becomes a leader on a consistent basis.

      i disagree as giving xhaka and ozil the armband could improve their game and attitude… as when a player wears it he will put in the extra 10 percent as everyone is looking at you, some might crumble under the pressure but a captain doesn’t have to be a fighter if his teamates will fight for him . a captain needs to be a leader and inspire his teamates, not every captain is in the viera/keane mould fighter and leader… you are gonna hate this but the most recent one was van persie he was a great captain he wasn’t a fighter but he was a leader the armband did help his game and he was injury free for a while during that period!

      if ozil could replicate that because of an armband what’s the harm in trying to make him lead, this is a guy that feels alienated by his country goes on twitter and shares his strory so you know he has a fragile mentallity but if he feels loved, wanted , and needed he might do wonders. that’s why it reminds me of van persie abit as these are players that need to feel loved and important and he will give you his all, make him lead and you might get that on a consistent basis. so i’m liking emery so far, leading from the front!

      also there is a reason why fans at the emirates chant the ozil song even when’s he’s playing shiite sometimes a player just needs to feel the love! so show him some love innit!

  2. Babasola says:

    For tomorrow …
    Mesut Ozil is our Captain
    Xhaka Vice
    YEAH, I mean Cech ain’t starting and Ramsey either comes off the bench or starts next week

  3. Nikhilesh says:

    Just read an article about emery v guardiola, it says that valencia were the better team but they used to lose due to individual brilliance of barca players

    1. Sue says:

      I saw on sky sports that Emery hasn’t beaten Pep….time for that to change!! ?

      1. Nikhilesh says:

        Those results were due to individual brilliance of barca players rather than tactical inefficiency of emery, in fact pep had to change tactics to avoid an embarassment, that clearly shows that emery won tactically

      2. Kenny Rolfe says:

        Agree Sue but that’s only because Pep was in charge of Barcelona and we all know that La Liga is two horse race.

          1. Billy says:

            Sue, not sure but ive been told Emery always held hold against Barcelona at home even when he had an inferior team

          2. Sue says:

            I wasn’t knocking Emery… It just said he’s been up against Pep 10 times… drew 4, lost 6. But then look at the teams Pep has managed…. all league winners!

  4. Tatgooner says:

    there will be rotation and the captain will be known according to who starts the games.
    think it shows that there will atleast be one of these players starting every match.i would hve preferred lichtsteiner to be named captain though too he makes a better one than all those names

  5. Gifted says:

    A captain should be vocal on the pitch and that’s why am against Ozil getting the captain’s armband..The only natural leaders in the team are Xhaka, Lich and Papa..So, since Xhaka is in the list of our vice captain, he should wear the armband

    1. HRM says:

      That’s a 1 dimensional way of thinking how a captain should be. Being vocal can never be a substitute for consistent on pitch influence!

      Being vocal only makes u attractive… Flamini was vocal, but no where close to captain material

  6. Nayr says:

    Wgat tatgooner has said.

    under unai emery the team will vary adapting to the opposition.

    i think tommorrow we might see this team




    against city we cannot afford to play auba and lacazette.
    defensively we will be weak.we will need to overcrowd the midfield with cms..similar to how liverpool beat city.
    press fernandinho,quick transitions,counterattack hence why we need ramsey to play,to use his energy to put pressure on fernandinho.chamberlain played the same role for liverpool.

    so tommorrow i think either cech or ramsey is the captain.

    1. gotanidea says:

      Yes, according to Emery’s comments, I think we would most likely see that line-up and formation

      Emery could use 4-2-3-1 against a weaker team, but I think he would not want to take a higher risk because the opponent is Man City

      4-3-3 seems to be the safest choice, but Ozil always sucks when playing as a winger at Arsenal. I hope Emery replaces Xhaka with Ozil and use Reiss Nelson as winger

  7. JustJoy says:

    two captain for EPL = Kos nd Cech
    Fa cup=Rambo
    Caraboa Cup=Xhaka

    they can all captain the team when need be.

  8. barryglik says:

    It seems as though captains
    like the numbers players wear
    and the endless kit changes
    have become next to meaningless these days.
    So many Arsenal captains left the club while still Captain
    Vieira Henri Fabregas Vermaelen RVP Arteta
    while others promptly got injured Mertesacker Koscielny Ramsey 🙂
    That gives me an idea.
    Let us make Welbeck Jenkinson Ospina +Campbell captain immediately 🙂

  9. Andrew E says:

    Why name someone who might miss the whole season as captain. There is a chance he might never play for us again because of his persistent injury problems. I think he has ducked the issue and should give the armband to one of the 4 players – my choice would have been Ramsey but his indecision on whether he’s going or staying goes against him. I would probably pick Cech out of the remaining 3. Definitely not Ozil, he should concentrate on what he does best i.e. creating goals. There needs to be someone the players can look to when there is a problem on the pitch but there is no obvious captain in our present squad like Tony Adams and Patrick Viera who were exceptional leaders.

  10. Sean says:

    In all honesty Ramsey should get the captaincy along with his new contract but is he the sort of captain we need? He’s been there the longest, comes up with the goods in the big games & is our kind of British home grown for last 10years (Welsh I know). If he cuts out the flicks & silly mistakes then I have no doubt about him serving us well as Captain but has better where Ozil plays on that pocket behind the striker where he can bomb into the box. He’s fit enough to.play box to box but needs to be a lot more disciplined. Torreira could protect him loads.

    Ozil is not Captain material unless he becomes vocal but don’t see that happening. Never know Emery could turn him into a beast!

    Xhaka, Koss won’t play as much to be Capt & Cech is an okay choice but id like to see an outfield players as Captain.

    We need a guaranteed starter every week from the middle of the park & that could be Aaron to captain this new look Arsenal. With Jack gone he is now Golden boy.

    1. ozziegunner says:

      Sean, why hasn’t Ramsey signed? He is heading down the same path as Van Persie, supported through injury by Arsenal then won’t sign a contract extension. At least Arsenal got a transfer fee for Van Persie.

      1. Sue says:

        Yeah & I detest RVP

  11. Phil says:

    Why is Alex Iwobi not mentioned as captain?Firstly he is English.(even though he plays his International Football for Nigeria.But he doesn’t play that much because the Nigerian Manager keeps dropping him).Secondly he is guaranteed a starting place in the team because he is our best player (because he must be because so many have posted him in their team in place of players like Ozil and Mikki so they obviously know more than we do so that’s must be right then).Thirdly he will lead by example (he will just flap those arms up and down and everyone will know straight away he is the Captain.We will be guaranteed to win EVERY toss up of the coin because if he calls heads and it turns up tails then a quick little flap of his arms and the coin will flip itself over).This is a priceless asset to the team and has earned him th ecrespect of everyone in World football.
    I can’t wait to see him start the match tomorrow.But Why has our Manager not made him Captain?EMERY OUT

    1. Sue says:

      ?? bloody brilliant!!!

    2. Kenny Rolfe says:

      Plus if he’s captain he can go partying when he wants

      1. Phil says:

        See Kenny-the player has all the attributes just give him the armband

    3. D says:

      It’s always nice to see our “fans” ridiculing and belittling our own players. How about you leave that to other teams and pundits, yeah? Because it’s not as if we don’t get enough stick already. Or maybe you’re just doing it because these others fans and pundits are too busy spending their time insulting our fanbase because of people like you?

      1. Kenny Rolfe says:

        Sorry D, just don’t rate him

        1. Kenny Rolfe says:

          Anyway, he’s got the last laugh, He’s getting £70,000 a week.

      2. l says:

        Going by fan criticism, we would have probably sold Elneny, Xhaka, Mustafi, Cech, Ramsey, Bellerin, Welbeck in this window and bought every stars in their imagination as replacements. Let’s cheer the players we have. I admired Leicester players last night against Man U because they put in a good shift. If not for the fact that they didn’t start Vardy on time and that player on the left wing was not bringing the ball into the 18 yards on time they would have gotten a positive result.

    4. l says:

      Iwobi is a work in process at this point pending on if he lives up to expectation within the next 2 years. Talking about young & promising players, I think they are of 2 categories. The first category being those who become stars at a young age like Mbappe, C. Ronaldo of Man U, Messi, Neymar etc.I will like to tentatively add Sane of Man City to this group. Some of these guys stay long in the limelight while other don’t. The other group is those with potentials who are played with the hope of becoming established players in the nearest future. Iwobi belong to this group. The jury is still out on him. I believe if the coaches see what some of his critics see in him, he would either be loaned out or sold by now. But for them to use him means there is something he is offering to the team. Criticism and commendations are parts of sport but some people take it beyond the limit. Even in Nigeria national team, Iwobi only started the first game just as Torreira didn’t start the first game for Uruguay. The fact that some people state that he is unnecessarily criticized in their own opinion doesn’t mean you have to take these issues personal each time other issues are brought up.

      So far on the topic of discussion, no one has recommended Iwobi for captain and rightly so. But Super Phil has an unfinished business with those who opposed his opinion in the past.

      Generally, we must realize that every team player can never be a star. The effectiveness of the the team work + individual brilliance is what makes people see almost every player in a successful team as a star. A good example is Monaco of 2016/2017 season where clubs perceived every member of that team to be star.

      I can only hope that our team do the basics to achieve success this season. Because if for example we lose 6 games in roll, so many of you saying will judge Emery at the end of the season will have a change of mind. That is modern football for you.

      1. Kenny Rolfe says:

        I, You say the jury is still out regarding Iwobi, does that mean you’re not sure of him also, whatever your point is, at least you ain’t put him in the same categories as Ronaldo, Messi or Neymar. Thank goodness for that.

    5. mobella says:

      Phil i usually look forward to read your opinion but what is this bull***t you are talking about Iwobi. If you really watch Nigeria play you will realise that your constant statement of him being unused by Nigeria coached is a lied. As Nigerian, i will tell you his name is one of the first on the team list if he is fit. What you saw in the WC is a rare event and that was because he was not fit. If you think I’m wrong can you name one meaningful Nigeria matches that he didn’t play in if he was not injured. I understand you don’t rate the player but stick to what you know about him when you are criticising him. The only match he didnt he play in in the WC is against Iceland, the started the first and came on as substitute in our last.

      1. Abel says:

        Never mind Phil. He proudly displays his ignorance on all things Iwobi as well as underlying discrimination. Unai must be even more clueless than Wenger for giving Iwobi a new improved contract!

    6. kstix says:

      this is petty phil. drop the act already. let’s stand together as arsenal supporter regardless of what part of the world we come from. u keep regurgitating the same things. yes we know iwobi can’t kick a ball, we know ramsey can’t either. still we show our support for the team because that’s what fans do. if u were a better player than these guys, arsenal would have signed u. b

    7. Senile says:

      Here we go again!

  12. Scott Williams says:

    In my humble opinion and as a ten year long season ticket holder what needs working on is our 12th man, we have the worse support in the premiership, how 3000 away fans can outsing 60000 week in week out amazes me. So instead of moaning about how shit our players are and who is worthy of captainsy and whatever flimsy reason to insult the team lets have a little more support, it’s not like Leicester won the title with world class players, their die hard fan base were a big contribution.

    1. Kenny Rolfe says:

      Excellent point Scott and 100% right. Trouble is, and I’m not including yourself, is the majority of fans at the Emirates never went to Highbury. Don’t even know “COME ON YOU REDS”

  13. snowden says:

    Emery’s decision on the Arsenal captaincy raises more questions than answers

    Says the headline.
    The content lists three well known questions and no more! That is it! If so nothing new here

    1. Midkemma says:

      To be fair, one of the questions that has been asked shouldn’t be asked.
      “Does this mean Cech will be our number 1?”
      Cech was given the number 1 shirt for a reason, why would we not call him our number 1 when he wears the number 1 shirt?
      Why would we throw Cech out to retire when he was the keeper who made more saves per goal, Leno didn’t save as many per goal he let in before joining us and he didn’t have Wengers defense rolling out the red carpet for attackers.

  14. Midkemma says:

    I think Cech will be our number one still, just cause we signed a keeper doesn’t mean he will playu even if the manager thinks the other keeper is in better form.

    From what I have read, Emery will not play Leno just cause he is a new name, he will play Leno when Leno deserves to play, he has to prove himself to the boss that he is the best keeper.

    Having a GK as the cptn doesn’t bother me as long as we have other ‘leaders’ on the pitch that can act as the voice for Petr, Petr gives out the command and Xhaka (example) relays that command to the team from the middle.

    One thing that has bugged me about Cech, nothing HE has done but it is the countless articles I read saying Leno will be our number one and obviously going to start against City, Cech increase in performance is ALL down Leno arrival…

    Soo…. Who has forgotten that we had a GK coach that ruined multiple top GK talents? Was ruining Cech to the point he was almost a clown in goal after being one of the best the EPL has ever seen…

    Why so easy to write of Cech when he is our best GK still?

  15. RSH says:

    ozil isn’t a leader. Let’s not tell lies. Actually nobody on that entire list is. Seriously, I’d rather it be Lichtsteiner

  16. Abel says:

    There are various reasons for making players captain, one of which is player profile. Neymar has captained Brazil to two world cups despite not having much leadership skills in a team with natural leaders like thiago silva. He was made captain because he is clearly the most talented and high profile player in the team. Messi also captained his team to the world cup despite Marscherano being older and leader on the pitch. But like Neymar, Messi is the most high profile player in the Argentine squad.
    Ozil is our most talented and high profile player.

    1. Kenny Rolfe says:

      You got it Abel. Educate them.

    2. KingNAP says:

      sorry mate… I think Miranda captained Brazil in the last world cup

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