Paul Merson: Why Arsenal should name David Luiz as club captain

Arsenal legend Paul Merson believes David Luiz should be the club's next captain

Paul Merson
Arsenal legend Paul Merson (Photo: Sky Sports)

Paul Merson believes Arsenal should make David Luiz their new club captain.

Arsenal manager Unai Emery has handed Switzerland international Granit Xhaka the captain’s armband for the opening six games of the Premier League season.

The defensive midfielder is a controversial choice to lead the Gunners given his often erratic style of play, as highlighted by the penalty Xhaka conceded in the north London derby.

Xhaka’s substitution during Arsenal’s 3-2 victory over Aston Villa in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon was greeted by jeers by some members of the home support.

Luiz moved to Arsenal in an £8m deal from Arsenal’s bitter London rivals Chelsea FC in the summer transfer window.

And former Arsenal midfielder Merson believes that Luiz merits the captain’s armband ahead of Xhaka.

“The worrying thing for me is I heard the manager say he’s going to have five captains, which tells me he has no idea what his team is,” Merson told Sky Sports.

“Unai Emery’s been there a year-and-a-half, he’s got to have five captains because he doesn’t have a clue what his best team is. He hasn’t got a clue. The good teams are the ones who play virtually the same team every week, but with Arsenal you don’t know who it’ll be from week to week.

“David Luiz has got to be captain, he’s a serial winner. People have a go at him because one week he’ll be a 2/10 and the next a 9/10, but he’s going to play every week.

“I’m not the greatest lover of a forward being the captain, but [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang’s another one. Those front three should pick themselves straight away and you go from there – they’ll play every week, if they’re fit.”

Arsenal were 3-2 winners against promoted side Aston Villa after Emery’s men twice came from behind against the Gunners.

The north London side eased to a 5-0 victory over Championship side Nottingham Forest in the Carabao Cup third round on Tuesday night.

Arsenal are building momentum after three successive victories in the Europa League, the Premier League and the League Cup.

The north London side haven’t won the Premier League title since 2003-04 – and the Gunners have never won the Champions League nor the Europa League in their current formats.

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