Mikel Arteta has spoken about his bond with vice-captain Per Mertesacker and how he believes they’re quite similar.
Both Arteta and Mertesacker were signed in 2011 and both become leaders very quickly. It was said that they walked into the canteen at London Colney and noticed the different cliques, and swiftly began encouraging everyone to start eating together and not in groups.
Now, our vice-captain and captain are hailed as the two squad members you can go to if you need advice or encouragement.
They also have an immense amount of respect for each other, which was shown when the BFG offered our FA Cup trophy to Arteta to lift, even though the defender had led the team for majority of the season since the midfielder was injured.
“I think we have had very similar careers at the club,” Arteta said. “Per is a player and a person I really respect and he has been really helpful with me. We have a very good relationship and hopefully we can continue that.”
Having not just one but two senior members in the team who other players can go to when they need help is fantastic and it’s just a bonus that both are such professional, respectful and level-headed people.