Arsene Wenger has admitted that it was a ‘natural choice’ to make Per Mertesacker captain while Jack thinks it’s great because Per organises the team dinners.
He is, perhaps, the only person to think this.
It’s well known that Wenger puts no stock in the role of captain, preferring to have no 11 leaders on the pitch at any one time. The fact that an Arsenal captain has only started 1`3 games in the past three seasons means little to the manager, but a lot to many fans who are simply aching to see a captain on the pitch and remaining longer than one season after being handed the armband.
Mertesacker is out of contract next season.
“Per is a very respected figure in the dressing room, is loved as well and is also a very demanding figure. I think it is absolutely natural to be [him],” Wenger told Arsenal Player.
“[In his absence] that’s where it will be taken by the assistants. One of them will be Koscielny, also Cazorla – the experienced players – Cech maybe.
“We will have a group of people that will take care of the energy levels and the problems of the team. That will be down a lot to the experienced players.”
Jack Wilshere, another who seems like he would be a great pick for captain if we are now choosing them based on who takes up the least time on the pitch, added, “It is good news for us. For me anyway, over the last few seasons he has been like a captain.
“He is a natural leader and I know he has picked up an injury, but he can still bring so much to us as a team. I’m sure if you ask the other boys, they will say he would be an obvious choice for captain. We are happy.
“He is organised, and he won’t take any nonsense from anyone. If someone is late or on their phone, he is on to them – it doesn’t matter who you are. He is the one who organises our team dinners so for me he is a great choice.”
Yes, Arsenal captain. Now no longer a man who drags his team over the line against the odds, but the man who polices the use of mobile phones and books tables at a restaurant for a night out.
Look, don’t get me wrong I love Per, I’m just old fashioned and prefer my captains fit, first choice, and not possibly leaving in the next 12 months.
Crazy, I know!