With the departures of former captains Thomas Vermaelen
and Mikel Arteta
, I've had to make a decision on their replacements in the squad.
Defending powerhouse Per Mertesacker
will be handed the captain's armband for the season.
Mertesacker has shown plenty of leadership qualities last season and had already captained the side in the absences of Vermaelen and Arteta in the team. He has been a splendid player since joining Arsenal in 2011 and I think he's the perfect person to wield the legendary armband. At the age of 29, he may not be our long-term captain or anything of the sort, but he will hold on to the captaincy for now.
The new vice-captain, replacing Arteta, is local boy Jack Wilshere
Since he was introduced into the first team in 2011, Wilshere has gone from strength to strength at Arsenal. I made him my first-choice in central midfield immediately when I saw his skill with a football, and he has repaid my faith well with 58 appearances in all competitions last season.
Still at only 22 years old, Wilshere is already being valued at a remarkable price of £30 million. His quality is undeniable and so is his ability to keep the team in the game. The vice-captain position is his for now, but there's no doubt he will be my future captain.
Unfortunately, his injury problems has continued to persist, and despite having a great injury-free season before, he's been struck with a torn hamstring that will keep him out of contention for a couple of months. A huge loss for our squad, no doubt.
Under the new captains, I have a lot of confidence that we can repeat our Premier League glory from last season and perhaps even go a few steps further in winning other trophies like the Champions League and the FA Cup.