‘Expect that to change’ – Arteta tipped to make big decision on captaincy

Martin Keown claims that he expects Mikel Arteta to take a stand and remove Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from the Arsenal captaincy.

The striker was dropped from the playing squad this weekend for a supposed disciplinary breach, with the team going on to win 3-0 against Southampton at the Emirates in his absence.

This wasn’t the first time that he has been dropped however, with Auba having been made to sit as an unused substitute as we beat Tottenham last season for supposedly turning up late on matchday.

Auba retained his captaincy after the previous incident, but Keown insists that he believes that will not be the case this time around.

‘The captaincy is in question now,’ Keown told Match of the Day followers (via the DailyMail).

‘You can’t keep being late or disappearing on trips abroad and not coming back on time.

Your teams needs you and he’s not there when they need him the most. I’d expect that [the captaincy] to change now.’

While I agree that Aubameyang should have the armband taken away, that decision could cause issues in the dressing room at one of the busiest times of the season.

Arteta has a big decision to make, but what is best for the squad in the long-term has to be the priority, and getting the team morale up currently is a struggle. If a new captain is needed to help bring that, then it needs to happen now, and as we’ve seen, we can win without Aubameyang. If he is a problem, then January isn’t far away…


Tags Martin Keown Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang


  1. Reggie says:

    I wouldn’t like to be Arteta over this but IF he does make someone captain in Aubas place, my choice would be Ramsdale and look to the future.

  2. gunnerforlife says:

    It would be difficult for Arteta to remove Auba as Captain, but if Auba is not the Captain, I would prefer Tierney as our next Captain. He has got the experience, the heart and composure to be a good Captain. He is a leader on the pitch and plays his heart out for the team.

  3. Dan kit says:

    Shame he didn’t keep this in house rather than doing a prime Jose and throwing the player under the bus when things start to go wrong .

    1. SueP says:

      Dan kit
      What was Arteta supposed to say when asked why Auba was dropped by journalists at the pre match interviews?
      Stomach ache? Why protect the club captain who is late back from an agreed trip? I don’t get your stance. Arteta didn’t throw him under the bus after a bad performance.

      1. Dan kit says:

        You keep it in house sue like I said ,no need to go public and make a big thing of it as Arteta as done once again ,the thing with Arteta is he likes to blame everyone but himself but will pat himself on the back when it goes his way .
        If the rumours are true that he went home for family reasons then it’s a bad show from the manager and the club doing what they did .
        Not sure what his performances have to do with what I said but seeing you have brought that up ,it’s obvious to see why they have dropped off ,he was on fire before Arteta rolled up .

        1. SueP says:

          There has been a crossed perception Dan kit between us

          Jose complained about performances on the field to deflect away from himself. He didn’t do Shaw any favours either.

          Auba was given permission to fly and was expected back on time. It’s not too much to ask. If the trip was on compassionate grounds then I’d hope the club would have given him a longer stay. Not getting those vibes rather, Auba didn’t follow what was expected

    2. jon fox says:

      Dk It is so tedious that according to you nothing MA EVER DOES can satify your vengeful determination to be rid of him.

      Your constant and unfair criticism of him, even in non direct team matters such as this captaincy, is so revealing about how you operate and I genuinely feel sorry for you in your spiteful haste to get rid of MA.

      YOU WILL NOT BE SUCCESSFUL IMO. I say this, even as one who has real doubts about whether or not MA is the long term answer to our managerial choice.

      But spite and vengeance toward him, which pours forth from you in torrents, can never be decent, honest or the right way to be.

      1. Dan kit says:


  4. PJ-SA says:

    MA was the one who caused the whole situation by making Auba captain and Xhaka his deputy!

    There’s very few actual leaders in the AFC squad, choice really shouldn’t be that difficult then.

    Give it to Ramsdale and then you are sorted for years.

    1. James says:

      Arteta didn’t make Auba captain, remember Xhaka, Palace, fans booing him when he was walking off, sarcasticly clapping 👏 the home supporters. All this happening under Unai Emery. Emery disciplined him sripped of the captaincy and gave it to Auba.

      Nothing to do with Arteta at all

      1. PJ-SA says:

        Ok let me simplify it for you then…Auba led by example when he was in great form, not all leaders need to shout, some can do it by being a model player.

        Now that he is neither a vocal captain or one that leads by example he should’ve been removed as captain over a year ago already. Who has been in charge over the past 2 years?

        1. James says:

          Yeah it not as simple as now your playing shit your not captain lol, dunno what clubs you’ve played for. The psychological things to think of her too. Auba has it in his locker we all know that. Also what will the other players think if they see a guy who has a bad run of form punished because of form.

          I see where your coming from though, I didn’t agree with giving Auba a new contract but we did unfortunately

      2. SueP says:

        I didn’t remember that about the captaincy.

      3. jon fox says:

        James, Utter nonsense!
        MA COULD HAVE, had he wished, taken the captaincy away from Auba when he first came. But he chose not to, so now has to reap what he foolishly sowed.

  5. SueP says:

    It is a tricky situation and one I’m sure Arteta could have done without. He gave him the armband as we all know after the contract extension.
    Tierney’s and Ransdale’s names keep cropping up. I love AR’s enthusiasm and there is a level head on Tierney’s shoulders. Difficult choice anyway, with so many new and young players, with few experienced players to fill the role

  6. James says:

    Arteta’s fault????????? Get real will you. Look, the guy maybe isn’t the man to get us back to our best we are all aware of that. But to beat him with any tiny stick you can get hold of is ridiculous now and it’s making people look quite stupid, very childish and seriously cretinous. Let’s judge Arteta on the performances of the team and results only please. Not on what hangovers other current members of the club or people who have long since gone have left us with.

    What’s next Smith-Rowe suffers a long term injury and its because he wears his socks too low, that Artetas fault cause he should be making players wear their kit properly lmfao.

    Anyway this situation was created by Emery, he made Auba captain. He wasn’t captain material and I think it’s also a burden on the guy. He has a career of disciplinary issues this hasn’t happened “BECAUSE OF ARTETA”.

    Due to Arteta’s inexperience Auba kept the armband when he had the best opportunity to change it. But when your trying to maintain continuity and if you want to keep a player running to the end of his contract, stripping him of the captaincy isn’t the best way to convince a player he belongs and to sign on.

    Before people say well it’s “Artetas fault he’s still at the club” yes maybe. But when Auba was in the form he was in the season we won the FA Cup you can understand the decision of the club, not just Arteta to keep Auba. We could afford to lose those goals. Hindsight is everything and following his heroics that season, who would have thought 18 months down the line he wouldn’t be able to hit a cows backside with a banjo.

    But Auba needs to either step down or be made an example of. Dan kit is right in a way perhaps he shouldn’t be so open and transparent in these matters. But on the hand Auba obviously thinks he’s bigger than the club and the rules don’t apply to him. So being public with the situation of his omission from the match day squad highlights to the players:

    A. There are “non negotiables” and no one is exempt
    B. Just because you a so called superstar doesn’t make you bigger than the club and you must follow the rules especially if your the captain where you should be enforcing them.
    C. What if Arteta did and said nothing, what example does that set for the rest of the playing and non playing staff

    For me going public with why Auba was ommited was correct. Now have the ball and make the ultimate statement and take the captaincy off him.

    Ramsdale or Tierney to replace him for me

    1. Sue says:

      So let me get this straight – MA is teflon and it’s all Unai’s fault?

      1. James says:

        No not at all there were alot of mitigation and other factors. Arteta should have changed the club captain when he arrived and the club shouldn’t have given him a new bumper contract. But when arteta arrived at the end of the Feb I think, more than half way through a season Auba was in golden boot form and was the player we all loved how do you strip the captaincy off the guy at that point.

      2. James says:

        Suggest you read the entire post noylt the first sentence 👍

  7. Sue says:

    Gabriel for me and I really hope we move on swiftly from this. I am disappointed in Auba – something else we could do without right now!

    1. PJ-SA says:

      I like the thought of Gabriel a Cap and possibly Ramsdale or Tierney as vice. All 3 are young but have already shown more leadership qualities than Auba&Xhaka.

  8. Prof.Wenger says:

    Why do I have the feeling that Auba wants to leave to Barca?

    1. SueP says:

      I though Barca were in financial do do.
      All credit to Auba if he wants to leave for a club where he feels he will be nurtured and take a drop in salary to achieve it. Or is it the case that Arsenal subsidise his wages?

    2. jon fox says:

      PW. Surely you are not hinting that Barca will be remotely interested in this busted aged flush! Are you? They could not even afford his wages, let alone a fee, even if they wanted to, which I AM SURE THEY DO NOT!

  9. gunnerforlife says:

    Probably Auba has already made up his mind to leave Arsenal. If so, a sorry end to a sad state of affairs. For 2 continuous seasons, he was our best player and it shouldnt end like this. Something can still be done to allow him to get his magic back again, I guess, he is too good a player to be let go off. Form may be temporary but class is permanent and there is no doubt Auba is a class player. There seems to be some issue that is troubling him.

  10. Declan says:

    Whilst Tierney would make a good captain he’s not a nailed on starter as Tavares is in my opinion level with him as a player, if not slightly better. It would be big Gab for me or Ramsdale.

  11. guy says:

    Ramsdale for me – he already bosses the team anyway!
    Tierney is too injury prone, is no longer a shoe-in LB and is much more introverted than AR. We had a “lead by example” captain in Auba, and I for one want somebody more obviously vocal and upbeat.
    Gabriel doesn’t have the English yet and that’s the only reason I wouldn’t consider him.
    There’s several leaders who I don’t think are established enough either in the team or as unofficial leaders – top of that list is Ode, but also Lokonga and White.
    Please not Partey or Xhaka!
    An option is keep Laca as skipper this season until he probably leaves, and choose in the summer…

    1. James says:

      Agree I think it looks laca is going to be our first choice for now or until someone is signed. He does have that vocal ability and seems to be a good leader on the training paddock so yeah make the big decision in the summer

  12. chapo says:

    This one has been handled very poorly by the club and manager.
    If the report is true and he
    went to see his sick mum then I’m with Auba on this one.
    Firstly travelling to see his sick mom was impromptu for
    Auba himself, secondly he clearly knew the implications of
    not returning the same day. So my guess is that he
    probably met his mom in a situation where he just
    couldn’t make the return trip back same day evening and
    as a result came back as soon as he could the following
    morning. Its not like he came back 3 days later so I don’t
    really see what the overreaction is about. Maybe Arteta
    saw the perfect opportunity to stamp his authority as
    usual. Coupled with the fact that this is not Auba’s 1st
    disciplinary case, a lot of people are over reacting if truly
    his sick mom is the reason for his breach. What’s the
    essence of going to see my sick mom if I’m just going to
    show her my face and leave? Need to spend some little
    time with her, make sure she is well taken care of, make
    sure the bills are sorted out, most importantly be sure she
    is in a good position to recover, etc. The is a huge
    possibility that his slight delay was worth it

  13. Obua joshua says:


  14. Tammy Isaiah says:

    I can’t believe no one mentioned Bukayo Saka when in truth, He is The One who’s carried This Team on his back consistently for the last 2 seasons. Cesc was captain at age 19 or so, Saka is our Most Consistent player , He leads the attack, he leads the Team,
    Always Dangerous and always trying to make something happen (especially when we’re loosing) , that’s what captains do … I say give that Armband to the young Brit. He’s the future

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