The Belgian centre-half was the favourite to be handed the armband after Van Persie sealed a £24m move to Manchester United this week.
Arsène Wenger also confirmed midfielder Mikel Arteta as the club’s new vice-captain. “The new captain is Vermaelen and [the vice-captain is] Mikel Arteta,” Wenger said on Friday.
“Vermaelen was vice-captain, so it is a quick decision. We have many potential captains in this team.”
Wenger also confirmed that both Laurent Koscielny and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will miss Arsenal’s Premier League opener against Sunderland on Saturday through injury. New signing Santi Cazorla and winger Theo Walcott will undergo late fitness tests.
Meanwhile, the Arsenal boss admitted Alex Song could leave the club this summer, with Barcelona having been heavily linked with a move for the midfielder, but Wenger also stressed that the Gunners could yet still bring in some new faces before the transfer window closes.
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