There has been plenty of talk surrounding our club of late – and for good reason.
The winds of change are sweeping around The Emirates, and Unai Emery’s appointment has sent the media into a froth over the inevitable variances that will occur after over two decades under one man’s stewardship.
One thing that hasn’t really come into focus is who will lead our men on the pitch.
The subject of our next skipper is an important one. The person who wears the armband next season will be the link between Emery in the dugout and the enacting of his demands.Not only this, but when it comes time to dig our heels in, the captain is the man who leads from the front.
Many think that Aaron Ramsey is the perfect candidate. The model professional who leads from the front, there is no denying he is the perfect example for our youth for triumph in the face of adversity, and never giving up.
Does the Welshman have the chops though? Many say that vocality is a dying trait when it comes to wearing the armband, and all that is needed is someone to lead from the front with their talents.
I would have to disagree. We have had those types of leaders before, back during the time when we dished out the armband as a lure to wantaway players – it didn’t work.
Captains need to have the ability to pick players up when they’re either having an abysmal game or if they’re making errors. They need to have that extra clout to be able to say what needs to be said, without recrimination. The players will listen because he is the leader, without fail.
If it isn’t Rambo though, who should it be? It isn’t as if we are stocked to the rafters with leaders – many people would say this is one of the many reasons we have struggled over previous seasons.
We have had a decent skipper recently though, but Mertesacker’s lack of minutes on the pitch undermined his strength. We need a player who will play the majority of our games.
Perhaps Granit Xhaka? Yes, his displays were erratic last campaign, but his will to win and his place in the team are strong. He seems to have the respect of his comrades and with a new man in charge, Xhaka could actually be played to his strengths rather than made to fit.
Other than these two players, we don’t have anyone who should shoulder this immense responsibility. Laurent Koscielny is a fantastic servant for the club, but leader he certainly isn’t. Plus, he is set to miss the first half of the season through injury. Nacho Monreal is the embodiment of consistency, but does he have what it takes to lead the team in difficult circumstances?
Then there is Jack Wilshere. His love for the club is undeniable, and we know he is certainly not lacking in making himself heard, but his future is uncertain – as well as his place in the team. If Jack stayed and picked up his game a little, then he would be a viable choice.
It would seem right now though, that it is a choice of two – and after last season and with a danger of Ramsey not signing a new deal, the Captains’ armband could well be the sweetener Rambo needs to commit his future.