Prior to the season that just ended, Arsenal had lost the services of Cesc Fabregas in 2011, and Robin van Persie who both signed for Barca and Man United respectively. Both players captained the club before leaving, which opened the door to the captaincy of Thomas Vermaelen.
Thomas Vermaelen was made captain as soon as Robin van Persie jumped ship a season before the last one. However, his inability to command a regular shirt has generated a lot of heated arguments with most fans expressing their desire to see the armband handed to someone else. For the better part of last season, Mikel Arteta who is the club’s vice-captain stood in as captain but his position could also be threatened next season as the club is set to sign a defensive midfielder.
What this means is that Arsenal could be in a position where the captain and the vice-captain both seat on the bench; which is not acceptable in my opinion. Arsenal need a player who plays regularly on the pitch as captain and that is why a player like Per Mertesacker will fit in perfectly.
The German international is highly respected by his teammates, who could do with some leadership on the field. A lot of people have suggested Jack Wilshere, but I disagree with this due to the fact that the 22 year old England international is still too young to lead a team like Arsenal.
Mertesacker also popularly referred to as BFG by the fans, will no doubt bring his maturity and calmness to bear on the team when pressure starts to mount. He was seen in one of our matches last season screaming at Mesut Ozil for failing to appreciate the fans after the team lost an away game. That is the kind of leader a team like Arsenal need next season if we want to avoid losing the big games.