Today marked the day Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas left the club he joined as a 16-year-old. In what I call déjà vu, Fabregas is emulating former club captains Patrick Vieira, Thierry Henry and William Gallas in leaving. I will not rule out the possibility of the next Arsenal captain keeping the tradition unless we revert to the old formula.
I was cheekily informed the reason Wenger was sacked by his old club Monaco was his win-the-title with-kids policy, something the gaffer was trying to do for the last six years for his current club Arsenal. Two weeks ago, he promised of a “super quality” signing, only to sign the unproven, 18-year-old winger Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain for a whopping £15 million from Southampton. Sounds familiar? Let me help you: Theo Walcott.
I would not say Theo Walcott is a world-class player. However, Wenger will right away say Walcott is still young even though he is already 22. He has been at Arsenal for five years already! Still young, you say?
Wayne Rooney, signed by arch-rivals Manchester United as a 19-year-old in 2004, is now a 25-year-old powerful striker. Some of us thought he is already 30, not because of his failed attempt to patch his balding head but because he has since scored 147 goals from 323 games for the Red Devils and winning 10 championships. Now, that is world-class and still young as well!
Wenger thinks he can win the title with kids but unless he is managing a Dutch club in the Eredivisie like Ajax Amsterdam, he can just forget it. The English Premier League is a bloody tough league. Leg-breaking finds no remorse in the hearts of players like Nigel De Jong, Ryan Shawcross and former player Roy Keane.
Wenger himself is thought to have a degree in psychology but he usually forgets, psychologically, kids still look up to elders and sometimes pee in their pants when they see players like Drogba, Vidic or Yaya Toure. Thus, Arsenal need well-respected, seasoned, quality players to lead and “protect” the group.
Oh, don’t say Sebastien Squilacci!
How I wish Jack Wilshere is 29-years old. I always see Wilshere like Rooney. He is tenacious, determined, robust and skilful too. He has shown time and time again he is no pushover off and on the pitch. Of course I am not asking Wenger to buy undisciplined yobs like Joey Barton. But a bit of Patrick Vieira would not hurt; someone that will strike fear to the opposing team. The current Arsenal team is seen to be kids, pushovers, sissies to some extent. If Jack was a bit older, I would pick him as captain.
Do you see any Bergkamp, Henry, Pires, Adams or Overmars from the current team? You might think I am living in the past, but as Fabregas once said, we lack “wow” players. Sad enough, the name that has been mentioned to replace Fabregas is Jadson. I say who in the blue world is that? Why can’t it be Ribery or Juan Mata (who we missed out) or Marek Hamsik?
No wonder the players are leaving.
Clearly we need a balanced, quality team. I seriously do not know what is playing inside Wenger’s head. But what I know is bringing in experienced, quality players will restore confidence in the dressing room and fans alike.
Arsenal dream line-up: GK Szczesny, DR Sagna, DL Gibbs, DC Gary Cahill, DC Vermaelen, DMC Song, ML Arshavin, AMC Wilshere, MR Ribery, FC van Persie, FC Tevez