These are the players who have each played in over 400 games for Arsenal, between them they played in an incredible 10,159 games, an average of 508 games per player. Many of us will be familiar with 18 of them as they played in the past 41years but I doubt that any of us would have been around when the final 2 played.
Bob John 1922-1937 – 470 games
Born in Barry, Wales, Bob played for Barry Town and Caerphilly, before joining Arsenal, who signed him despite stiff competition for his signature. He made his Arsenal first-team debut on 28 October 1922 in a 2-1 home defeat to Newcastle United, and soon became a regular, succeeding Tom Whittaker at left half.
He lost his place from the Arsenal side in the 1923-24 season due to stiff competition from Billy Blyth and Andy Young, but after switching to left back, he once again became a first team player. Eventually he was put back to left half, and this time he remained a first-team regular. A prodigious ball-winner and noted passer of the ball, Bob reached (but lost) in the 1926-27 FA Cup Final, after an error by his compatriot and close friend, goalkeeper Dan Lewis whose one mistake led to Arsenal’s loss. It was Bob who consoled Lewis after the final whistle, assuring him he would get another chance to a win a medal, but Lewis never did get the opportunity.
Despite some very strong competition he remained a first team regular, finally winning some silverware in the 1929-30, FA Cup Final. This was followed by three First Division titles in 1930-31, 1932-33, and 1933-34. He also scored Arsenal’s only goal in the 1932 FA Cup Final when Arsenal were controversially beaten by Newcastle United. Newcastle benefited from scoring a goal that was later determined to have been out of play just before the goal was scored. By this time he was one of the senior members of the Arsenal squad, and mentored many of the club’s younger new arrivals, such as Alex James. He played for Arsenal until he retired in 1938, playing for the final three years of his career mainly as a reserve player, missing out on a medal in the League win of 1934-35.
After his retirement he had a largely unsuccessful career as a coach, finishing his football career as a scout for Cardiff City.
His 470 games place him 11th on the all time list.
He passed away in 1982 aged 83 years.
Eddie Hapgood 1927-1945 – 440 games
He was born in Bristol. Eddie started his football career in the mid-1920s as an amateur playing in local football (while still employed as a milkman), after which he played for Kettering Town in the Southern League. In 1927 Herbert Chapman signed him for Arsenal at a fee of £950. He was so thin and fragile that Arsenal’s trainer Tom Whittaker forced him to take up weight training and to start eating meat, as he was a vegetarian. This turned to Eddie’s advantage outside of football as his new found muscular physique allowed him to supplement his minimum wage, as a footballer, by fashion modelling and advertising confectionary.
He made his Arsenal debut on 19 November 1927 against Birmingham City; initially he was used as backup for left back Horace Cope. Eddie had to wait until 1929 before he became a first team regular, after that he made the position his own, right up until the outbreak of WW11 in 1939. He played 35 or more matches in every season in that period and went on to succeed Alex James as Arsenal’s captain and he led the side to the League title in 1937-38, while personally winning five League titles and two FA Cups.
He was capped by England on 30 occasions making his debut in1930, and was England’s captain for 21 games including his first match which was the infamous “Battle of Highbury” against Italy in November 1934. Italy was the reigning World Champions at the time and England had declined to take part in the World Cup, so the match was billed as the “true” World Championship match. The match was notoriously dirty, with many players sustaining injuries, including Hapgood who had his nose broken. England beat the Italians (who were reduced to ten men for most of the match) 3-2. He was also captain when the English team played Germany, in Berlin and were forced (under pressure from British diplomats) to give the Nazi salute before the match, England won 6-3.
When WW11 started, Eddie who was only 30 served in the Royal Air Force, while also playing for Arsenal and England in unofficial matches. In 1945, he wrote one of the first football autobiographies, entitled “Football Ambassador”. After that he left football completely; he fell on hard times and wrote back to his old club Arsenal asking for financial assistance (as he had never been given a testimonial match) but the club only sent him £30. He spent his later years running YMCA hostels.
His 440 games place him 16th on the all time list.
He passed away on Good Friday 1973 aged 64 years.
Two of the other members of the 10,000 game club are John Radford and Dennis (God) Bergkamp and they are also among only 16 players to have scored 100 or more goals for Arsenal, Paul Merson fell one goal short at 99.
“You always think about the psychological impact of the last result on the morale of the team, as well as the confidence and happiness of everybody. You think the only way to deal with it is to just focus on the next one and win it, then everything will be alright”. “And, if we can win this game, what about the next one? If we play at our best, yes we can win that, so let’s do it. It is very difficult to have a global plan because as we know we are in a job that is unpredictable. The best way to make it predictable is to win the next game”. ”
“Still” he concluded, “it is a good moment for us to win a big game because we have a tough predicted month. At the moment we are on a good run and the best way to continue that is to keep the confidence level high and, of course, stay in a strong position in the title race.”
That’s Arsène Wenger after being asked about his overall strategy for four massive matches in 11 massive days starting this weekend at Liverpool. So one game at a time then.
Arsenal announced the date for the unveiling of the next statue outside The Emirates, 11.30am Saturday February 22nd. Oh! I forgot to mention, the statue is of Dennis Bergkamp who will be in attendance and will be a guest at the match. I’d like to see Dennis make a fifteen minute cameo appearance, wouldn’t that be a treat?
Team news was pretty sparse, basically the same squad as against Palace, Wilshere is a “might be” and Arteta is “alright”.
Liverpool 5 – 1 Arsenal
Nightmare at Anfield
Following the fall from the top of the table, in his haste to leave the scene of his team’s humiliation, Arsene Wenger took a tumble while hurrying to catch the homeward bound train at Liverpool Lime Street station, he was helped to his feet by two of that city’s finest boys in blue. After quickly checking that he still had his wallet, watch and mobile phone, he made his way without further miss-hap to join his defeated squad in the guards van for a subdued journey home.
Just like the flood waters on the Somerset levels the slurry from Saturday’s debacle is still washing around our club. With an important, and winnable, game coming up on Wednesday, Bob Crowe and his cronies permitting, it’s time to put The Great Liverpool Train Wreck behind us. So I will make no further mention of TGLTW.
“News” or speculation? However you look at it, it’s out there in the media, Sagna and Fabianski have both rejected new deals, so both could be moving on in the summer. Memo to AW, summer priority signing…. right-back.
The Tube strike is called off so both our game and that of Fulham go ahead as planned. Why am I mentioning Fulham you ask? Well the Cottagers announced that should the strike go ahead they would postpone their game against Liverpool thus giving the Bin-dippers a rest before arriving at Emirates Stadium to get their come-uppance for inflicting a heavy defeat on our beloved club.
Mesut Ozil is attracting unwanted attention from the sports hacks, Jeremy Wilson, in the Telegraph, asks if our record signing is just a mirage and cites some stats to back his claim, my well known detestation of stats prevents me from including them hear, suffice it to say that Ozil has scored less, and made fewer assists, had fewer shots, made fewer dribbles and put in fewer crosses since Christmas than before Christmas. A quick check of the top premiership suppliers of assists shows Ozil to be second to Rooney but ahead of Hazard, Silva, Coutinho, Oscar and Navas. So the mirage may well prove to a more a storm in a teacup and Mesut will soon emerge from his own personal Sahara.
In other reports, Ozil is working hard in the gym to build upper body strength in order to cope with the rigours of Premiership football,
Lukas Podolski has denied ever being close to leaving Arsenal in the last transfer window, and insists he has the complete faith of Arsene Wenger.
The German’s future was drawn into question in January, when he was mooted as being a possible makeweight in the Julian Draxler deal, however, the forward says there was no possibility of ever leaving the Gunners.
‘That was a myth. There was absolutely no truth to it,’ the 28-year-old said. ‘The coach told me as such, and I knew there was no truth in it.’
Oliver Giroud talking after the Man U stalemate…”I think we had a good reaction after the bad result against Liverpool,” the Frenchman told Arsenal Player. “I think it’s a good draw to be honest even if we could have scored at the end. It was maybe just about our confidence.
“We did well in the first half especially but after we looked a bit tired. It’s OK, we had a good reaction on the pitch and I think that’s the most important thing even if we wanted to win this game.”
No! the most important thing was to score a goal Olly then, we might have won. “I’m confident for the remaining games and we’ll know a bit more about our future after Liverpool and Bayern [Munich] because we want to play in every competition.” Is that the ambition? To play in every competition? What about winning every competition?
‘I felt we were nervous tonight, yes. We are usually dangerous breaking through with speedy passing, but they defended very well. But it is not worrying because we care about what we are doing.
‘When you concede five goals like we did against Liverpool on Saturday, maybe that’s what you do. The team was highly focused on not conceding after Saturday.
‘We missed out on the chance to go top but a point keeps us in the race. We played with the handbrake on tonight. I hope and think the handbrake will come off.
‘We’ve had two bad results, but we are still in a strong position.’
Speculation? Maybe, A report suggests that Arsene has met with the agent of Mario Balotelli to discuss prospects of the player joining in the summer. See last week’s news round.
Costa Rica striker Joel Campbell, who joined Arsenal in 2011 but due to the lack of a work permit has never played for the club, is looking for a permanent £7 million move to Olympiakos where he is currently on loan. His agent said…‘Going back to Arsenal? He would not be happy sitting on the bench – even in a top league.’
While we (still) sit pretty on top of the league, between two fixtures against sides that more than one Nostradamus-wanna-be pundit would have seen ahead of us by the end of the year, many attribute this success to the managerial consistency/continuity. But if the recent rumors of Arsène Wenger finally putting pen to a new three year contract in January will have fans rejoice about the stability ahead, the fact that Le Professeur will be 67 by the end of it has people start to consider a successor to the Frenchman (some started a while ago but they obviously have poor judgement so we won’t pay attention to them).
There’s a plethora of great coaches around, people with impressive careers and their bags full of trophies. But with The Arsenal’s tradition of welcoming back its former legends to see them work for the glory of the club, it is tempting to put the spotlight on these once top, top quality players and choose among them the One that is to lead us upon to the next chapter of our history.
Doing so would also ensure a relative continuity and is especially tempting due to the recent actuality seeing a lot of these aforementioned legends coming out, One about his hopes towards club and board, One about his views on the British coaching community and its segregation problem, One with a book, One with a documentary, and so On, I mean on.
I chose from the squads up until the Invicibles, considering most of those who came after are still playing. And with the idea of continuity in mind, I decided to choose only among the players that played under Arsène Wenger. So here you have it, among the players that graced the red and white shirt from 1996 to 2004 is the One. Pretty limited you will say, also considering that not every player, not even every great player, is coach material (that’s what club ambassador posts are for), and yet there is still quiet a few noticeable names that come out. So without further ado, here are the contenders.
Patrick Vieira (37) – The “Demolition” One
I will start with the One at the origin of this poll idea. Paddy’s declaration, though probably taken out of context by the media, about Arsenal’s lack of leadership threw discord among fans with some of them stating he was dead to them while others affirming their love for him, adding that they would be glad to welcome him back at the Arsenal, possibly as a coach.
Considering Patrick Vieira was only appointed as Manchester Shitty’s new reserve team and “Elite Development” (*Cough* what a load of crap) squad manager in May, it is still early to judge his managerial credentials. But, eager to find more so that you have all the information you need to make your judgement, I crossed the enemy lines to gather some intel. Yes, I went on the Shitty web site, looked through their video archives and finally got my hands on the Inspector Gadget’s post nomination interview. What I wouldn’t do for you guys. Paddy, it’s all on you !
To make it short, a few things popped out. The love of collective football he says he retains from his early age, playing with friends. The sense of responsibility he wants to instill in the young players as well as a winning mentality. For that last One, reflecting on Paddy’s declaration that he thought “Arsenal lacked what it takes to win dirty”, we all know what he means. And I for One am a little worried someone like him could coach the team, because that is so not Arsenal.
Dennis Bergkamp (44) – The “Godly” One
Here again it is hard to gauge Dennis Bergkamp’s managerial career. Slightly ahead of Vieira for he has already been in charge of a youth team and is now assistant manager of a team of the importance of Ajax Amsterdam, it is also good to note that the head coach under whom he is working, Frank DeBoer, is considered as One of the ascending talents of European football management. Undertaking the rebuilding of the mythical Dutch club, DeBoer has won three league titles in two and a half years at the helm. Learning from the mistakes that saw Ajax disappear from the European scene for a while, he is betting on youth and has revolutionized their academy. No doubt, seeing these methods baring fruit, Bergkamp could be tempted to consider them for his yet in gestation managerial style. That plus his Total Football education, Stillness, Speed, and the love for Attack he shared with Wenger and you might get a glimpse at what Iceman as a manager could look like.
Unfortunately, Bergkamp could have also been named the “Non-flying” One. And as long as his aerophobia problem isn’t solved, it is hard to see him appointed head coach of a team playing European football year in year out.
Tony Adams (47) – The “There’s only One Tony Adams” One
Mr Arsenal had an amazing career as an Arsenal player. He is the only One to have captained a major club in three different decades, and to the first League Cup and FA Cup double in England. He is One of the “Famous Four”, the back four that made the fame of the Arsenal offside trap. On his way to redemption after alcoholism blighted his career, Big Tone is a deep an attaching character. “In March 2003, BBC Sport named Adams as the former Arsenal player that the club would most benefit from returning” (Wikipedia). And he wants to return ! In June of this year, Adams said he had postulated to enter the board only to be snubbed and see Chips nominated. Now a board position isn’t exactly a coach position (not even close actually) but Tony clearly stated he would do anything at the club, even the tea, so I guess that also means head coach. At the same time he suggested Arsenal was ill prepared in case Arsène Wenger decided to leave. Very subtle.
Unfortunately, like mentioned above, not every great player makes a great coach. And with an average record of 27.73% wins in his three different spells as a manager, and a habit of quitting or being laid off within a year, Adams isn’t exactly in the league of an Arsenal coach contender.
Steve Bould (51) – The “Baldy” One
“He has no hair, but we don’t care ! ” Another of the “Famous Four”, Steve Bould has already an interesting managerial career to show off. Appointed head coach of the Academy team, he won two Premier Academy League and a FA Youth Cup. He knows the young guns and they know he can lead them to victory. How’s that for continuity ? Assistant Manager since last season, Bould bolstered our defense. His style might be very different from Arsène’s attacking style, but the same way, as an assistant, he complemented the Frenchman’s style, the appointment at his side of a Dennis Bergkamp could do the trick. Steve Bould would also undoubtedly provide the most seamless transition but One might argue that Arsenal needs to evolve.
For all of these reasons, Bould may look like the ideal candidate, and yet there might be another One…
Arsène Wenger (64) – The “Invicible” One
Who said 67 is too old for a manager ? Especially One gifted with such cunning intelligence, meaning that even if his body couldn’t move anymore, his head would still be able to win a few league titles and the Holy Champions League Grail.
Another thing, Arsène is nothing like Ferguson and he would certainly not quit while the club is still under reconstruction. Because the record signing of this summer was only the start. The “German speaking” Öne, as we could also have named him, is the reason why Mesut signed and, let’s face it, this Bizarre Sex Appeal is his and his only. If he keeps signing top, top quality players during the next three years, will he then leave like Red Nose after BSR followed his siren chant up north ? I believe not, because Arsène isn’t after legend, he is after Legacy.
Here are the candidates.
SO FELLOW GOONERS, WHO AMONG THE FORMER GUNNERS WOULD YOU SEE AS BEST FIT TO BE THE NEXT ARSENAL COACH ?
You can vote for up to 3 choices in the poll
I apologize to those of you who were hoping for more nostalgic faces, but feel free to add any suggestion in your comments. Same thing for any player you feel should have been on this list. I also apologize for the post kind of answers to itself but I look forward to standing corrected in the comments. Let the debate begin !
The news broke that Jack Wilshere had been photographed with a cigarette in his mouth, naturally the anti Arsenal media jumped all over the story, they haven’t had much to moan about recently, Arsene Wenger “fumed” at the news, oh aren’t these journos funny, and claimed that the player was risking his health as well as his reputation, he went on to say that he would be “speaking” to the 21 year old about it.
Liverpool moved to the top of the table with a predictable win over Crystal Palace, Arsenal target Suarez scored after just 13 minutes. Man City came from behind to beat Everton as did Man U to beat rock bottom Sunderland. It took two goals from unknown teenager Adnan Januzaj to spare the blushes of Gollum and his two mis-firing strikers Rooney and the Dutch bloke, who missed an absolute sitter near the end of the game.
Sunday: On this day …
6th. October 1973 a seventeen year old mid-fielder made his debut for Arsenal, coming on as a substitute for Geof Blockley against Birmingham City, soon to become one of the best players to pull on a Gunner’s shirt, Liam Brady. Forty years ago and it seems like yesterday.. 😀
In the lunch time kick-off Chelsea secured a win with a late goal and a late, late goal against Norwich City to move into third place in the table.
Later in the day, with a somewhat stuttering performance, we got a point at West Brom which was enough to return us to the top of the table on goals scored. A good position going into the international break.
Spurs returned to their true form taking a three nothing hammering from the team from The Boleyn Ground. Despite wide spread chanting of the “Y” word by the home fans police made just one arrest, although they have announced that they will be looking at video evidence and could not rule out further arrests.
Naturally Jack Wilshere grabbed the headlines, and the pun prize must go to Mr. Henry Winter of The Telegraph. “After all the controversy over pictures of him smoking, it had to be Jack Wilshere lighting up the afternoon here. It had to end here with the Arsenal mid-fielder enjoying a draw.”
The incident took place outside Dstrkt Club in Rupert Street, Soho on Thursday evening, the squad had been given two days off following the win over Napoli on Tuesday. Wilshere was on a “team night out”.
Jack Wilshere has admitted he made a mistake by smoking a cigarette but has insisted he will never be drawn in to it again in future. “Players make mistakes,” he said. “I am not a smoker. I spoke with the boss and he asked me what happened, I explained to him and we sorted it out”.
Editors note. It is believed that the owner of the club has an “issue” with spelling. 😀
England called up Kieran Gibbs to the squad for the two internationals after Ashley Cole pulled out with a rib injury, Kieran gets recognition for his excellent early season form.
Aaron Ramsey received the Barclays Player of the Month award for September and Arsene Wenger picked up the Barclays Manager of the Month award. Ramsey scored five times in five appearances while Wenger oversaw a perfect month with six wins in six matches.
In the wake of the FA’s attempt to poach a player born in Belgium of Albanian/Kosovan parents Jack Wilshere entered the argument over “foreign” players playing for England. “The only people who play for England Should be English people”. Wilshere was talking at St Georges prior the upcoming internationals. “If you live in England for five years it doesn’t make you English. You shouldn’t play”.
I want to come back to Arsenal, says Bergkamp: Yes Dennis would like to return “at some stage”, “but maybe not for at least another three to five years”. “I don’t see myself as a manager. I see myself as part of the coaching staff. I really enjoy training with the strikers”. Yes please Dennis anytime you like. 😀
Nicklas Bendtner’s reputation for arrogance often precedes him but the Arsenal striker believes such preconceptions are inaccurate.
Star (in his own mind) striker Nicklas Bendtner says he is a changed man. The reason the Great (in his own mind) Dane gives for his resurrection is that he has had a baby. Now I’ve heard of virgin births, but this is virgin on the ridiculous. During his time at Juventus some accused him of being “too fat to play”, well now we know the truth, he was pregnant. Talking to Arsenal Player he said “First of all I had a baby, which changed me a lot, I think a lot of people say that you have babies and they change you and stuff but for me I could really feel a big difference to my life. Being abroad showed me a lot of different things and different aspects of how to live and how to cope with problems. That has given me a lot more as a man for now”.
Overnight news – Carl Jenkinson was called up by the England U21s, recognition for that will help his confidence and could be a good thing for Arsenal as well, some competitive game time for him ahead of a couple of games standing in for the injured Bacary Sagna.
The furore over Jack Wilshere’s comment “only English players should play for England” continued with an attack on him by a South African bloke named Kevin who plays cricket for England. Most of the critics seem to have missed the context of what young Jack was saying, Professional players brought into the country should not be able to play for England, thus preventing home grown youngsters having the chance.
Backing for Wilshere’s stance came from Harry Redknap on Radio 4s Today Programme.
Tony Adams celebrated his 47th birthday.
Later in the day Arsene Wenger revealed that he may remain in England for the rest of his life. As reported in the Evening Standard. “I can see the rest of my life in England, why not?” he said. “I feel comfortable in this country because we share a common passion for football and as well I am very thankful for this country for having accepted me and giving me a chance. “I am happy on the football pitch.”
Take note of especially from 38min – the end of video: Comments from Arsene Wenger, Thierry Henry, Lee Dixon, Ian Wright, Ray Parlour and other players that have played with Dennis Bergkamp. How much respect from his fellow professionals of D.B.’s class as a player and a person.
We need that type of player right now at the club. Someone who commands the respect of others around him and he need not hold the captain’s armband physically. Since we are bluntness in our attacking third and not scoring goals, I would take a look at the attacking midfielder, second striker and main striker categories (because the 60% of football plays and influences comes usually from the middle spine of a team – the GK, CBs, CMs, AMs, FWs; while the remaining 40% comes from the sides – FBs, WMs, LW/RWs).
Players who could provide the class and commands respect from fellow professionals in the footballing world currently.
(1) Lionel Messi (Barcelona/Argentina), 25yrs old – valued at least £105million in transfer fees.
– The best striker in the world right now. 176 goals in 262 competitive club games (River Plate, Porto, A.Madrid), a goal ratio of 0.67/game (i.e. almost guarantee a goal in a game played). Europa League top scorer in consecutive years 2010/2011 and 2011/2012.
(3) David Villa (Barcelona/Spain), 31yrs old – valued at least £24.5million in transfer fees.
– An accomplished striker in his own right. 242 goals and 78 assists in 465 competitive club games (Sporting Gijon, Zaragoza, Valencia, Barcelona), he has won everything he could at club (CL, La Liga, Copa del Rey, FIFA World Cup, UEFA Super Cup) and international levels (World Cup and EURO champ). UEFA EURO 2008 Golden Boot winner and 2010 World Cup Silver Shoe & Bronze Ball winner.
(1) Andres Iniesta (Barcelona/Spain), 28yrs old – valued at least £61.5million in transfer fees.
– The best attacking midfielder in the world right now. Won everything he could at club and international levels. UEFA EURO 2012 – Best player of tournament. La Liga’s best attacking midfielder (2009, 2011, 2012). Zidane praised him, Cazorla admires him.
(2) (Ricardo)Kaka (Real Madrid/Brazil), 30yrs old – valued at least £16million in transfer fees.
– A model professional footballer and a classy person off it as well. Won whatever he could at club (Serie A & CL with Milan, La Liga with Real Madrid) and international levels (World Cup with Brazil). Ballon d’Or winner in 2007. He still has a lot to offer at club and international football and could be ready for his last challenge in EPL.
Ricardo Kaka – Real Madrid Tribute (2009-2012)
Kaka – The Return 2012 HD
Of the above 5, the closest we could get should be Kaka (including transfer fees, wages, agent fees). He could play behind the main forward as a playmaker or second striker. He is not over-the-hill as yet and gives a positive attitude wherever and whenever he plays. I see him in a similar stature as Dennis Bergkamp.
Adding him together with the loan of Thierry Henry in the next transfer window would provide at least a glimmer of hope in our club’s reversal of fortunes ahead.
The other player I wish we could secure is Henrikh Mkhitaryan (valued at least £15million) – 20 goals and 8 assists in 26 competitive club games (league, CL) currently this season. A star playmaker/second striker in the making for the future.
His league strike rate (18 goals in 17 games) is level with C.Ronaldo (13 goals in 15 games) & El Shaarawy(AC Milan)(13 goals in 16 games) and just behind Messi (23 goals in 15 games), Falcao (16 goals in 14 games) & Ibrahimovic (17 goals in 14 games).
I often come across this hashtag on twitter about former Arsenal players. Usually it’s in reply to Cesc or Henry saying something complimentary about Arsenal. Personally I think Cesc should be #oncebarcaalwaysbarca but that’s just me. I’ve always wondered how Arsenal fans make up their minds about which former players deserve our support/love and which deserve our contempt and the ones we could say neutral. Here is a list. Make your own minds up
Real name God. Finished his career at Arsenal after signing several 1 year rolling contracts. The most gifted Arsenal player in my limited experience.
My Verdict Always a gooner
Ian was top scorer for the Arsenal until Thierry took his crown. Since he retired he likes to wind gooners up on talksh*te and says he’s a Millwall fan but I think his heart is in the right place.
My verdict Always a gooner
“Mr Arsenal” Spent his entire career at Arsenal. Famously said “Remember the name on the front of the shirt and they’ll remember the name on the back”
My verdict Always a gooner
He came from Senegal to play for Arsenal. He was a great player for us but I feel he’s tainted himself working (and tapping up our players) for the northern oilers.
My Verdict Traitor
Cesc came to us from the Barca academy when he was 16. It was inevitable that he would go back someday. I think his timing was all wrong. Whatever talent he naturally has, Wenger made him the player he is today (and he’s sitting on their bench)
My verdict Traitor
He was the best left back in a generation. Was offered 60K PW by Dein but the board objected and would only give him 55K famously making him swerve his car (if only) and go for a secret meeting with Maureen. Still can’t stop talking about us. I get the feeling he’s a bit bitter despite the trophies.
My verdict Traitor
Our all-time top scorer and Monarch. Like Cesc, he went to Barca but unlike the Spaniard he’d helped us to win trophies. He got the CL he wanted and dedicated it to Arsenal. Came back last winter and scored the winners against Sunderland and Leeds.
My verdict Always a gooner.
Robin van Persie
He was with us for 7 years, Spent a lot of time injured, had one season without injury and f***ed off. He grew up as an arsenal fan but the “little boy inside him” was screaming Manchester United.