Fabregas Named Arsenal Captain
Posted by hiphopmama on November 24, 2008
Good. Good. Very good. It’s no magic bullet and won’t change the squad’s fortunes overnight, but, like the sacking of Gallas as team captain, it’s a change that has been a long time coming. Cesc has expressed his desire to captain the side in the past, and his commitment to Arsenal is well established. Gallas, on the other hand, never felt like a core member of the team, and his actions on his way out of Chelsea (threatening to score an own goal if not dealt somewhere else) indicate that his selfishness of late is less a fluke than a pattern.
Fabregas’ form has certainly fallen off a bit from last year, when he was the engine of the Arsenal attack, although much of that is attributable to the myriad changes to the team’s midfield in the off-season. Gilberto saw himself pushed to the side and out of his position as captain. Hleb left to join Barcelona. And, most importantly, Flamini also departed to play for AC Milan, leaving Cesc without his true counterpart in midfield. Playing amongst an extremely young side, Cesc has struggled to regain the level of play he attained last year, but many hope his promotion to captain will motivate him in his effort to return to form. It also can’t hurt Arsenal’s chances to keep him from a slew of Spanish sides who would love to steal him away this summer. At a mere 21 years, he already has a significant amount of experience to back his leadership claims, and I believe the team will rally around him much more than it ever did for Gallas.
As for the talk of Gallas returning to the squad, I hope it’s just that: talk. Wenger already did the hard part in stripping him of the armband. To bring him back in the fold would seem a replay of old indulgences with the player, and the team doesn’t need that. The back line is severely depleted at the moment, but I still think they should suck it up and try to hold on until Toure comes back and, hopefully, until another player can be bought in the January transfer window. Until then, we’ll take our lumps in the service of future progression. That’s what Arsene has been preaching all along with his youth policy anyway.