Arsenal all-time XI

My Arsenal all-time XI

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Here is my all-time Arsenal XI

David Seaman (Goalkeeper)

David Seaman was arguably one of, if not, the best ever goalkeepers in Arsenal’s history and English football. The Englishman was bought to the club by George Graham for a fee of £1.3 million (a record British signing for a goalkeeper at the time) in 1990. Seaman spent 13 years at Arsenal where he made a total of 478 appearances and holds the current clean sheet record in the Premier League with 130. The former England international was also named in the team of the decade (from 1992/3-2001/2) and holds 75 caps for his country, which makes him England’s second-most capped keeper behind Peter Shilton. David Seaman managed to pick up 9 trophies whilst at Arsenal, which includes 3 First Division/Premier League titles and 4 F.A. Cups. The 6’ 3’’ shot-stopper became widely known around the world and enhanced his skills and reputation whilst at the North London club until 2003 when he left for Manchester City. David Seaman was one of the Premier Leagues finest goalkeepers alongside Peter Schmeichel and without a doubt deserves his place in my all-time XI.

Ashley Cole (Left-Back)

Although he may be hated by the Arsenal faithful these days, Ashley Cole still remains one of the clubs best full-backs, ahead of Kenny Sansom and Nigel Winterburn in some fans eyes. I was really torn as to whom to put down in this position, but considering impact, skill and movement Ashley Cole does rank higher amongst the other two contenders. Ashley Cole was arguably one of the brightest English players to ever come out of the famous Arsenal youth academy, who adapted well to the Arsenal first-team and made the full-back position his own. Cole possessed great pace, movement as well as attacking prowess, and actually revolutionized the full-back position for aspiring players in the designated role. The past full-backs at the North London club didn’t push up as much, yet Cole was able to attack and defend to the same capacity. The England international signed his first professional contract in November 1999 and spent 7 years at Arsenal enhancing his abilities. Cole made a total of 224 appearances for the Gunners and managed to bag 9 goals along the way. The speedy full-back picked up 2 Premier League titles and 3 F.A. Cups and was apart of ‘The Invincibles’ in the 2003/04 season. A great player for the club…it’s just a shame he didn’t stay longer and left in the way he did.

Tony Adams (Centre-Back)

Mr. Arsenal himself, Tony Adams epitomized what a centre-back was all about, strong, dedicated and vigorous. The famous Arsenal no.6 spent his entire 19 year career at the North London club where he made an outstanding 672 appearances for the Gunners and netted 48 goals as well. At the tender age of 18, Adams became a regular starter for the Gunners from the 1985/86 season onwards. Along with Nigel Winterburn, Lee Dixon and Steve Bould, Tony Adams was part of the ‘famous four’ that lined up in the Arsenal defence…probably the most famous back line in the English game. In 1988 he became the clubs captain and remained it until his retirement in 2001. The resolute defender captained his beloved Arsenal to 4 Premier League titles (2 First Division titles), 3 F.A. Cups, 3 League Cups and a UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup in the 1993/94 season. Arguably Arsenal’s best ever defender, hence why all the clubs fans refer to him as Mr. Arsenal.

Sol Campbell (Centre-Back)

The Sol man had to be in the line-up purely for the fact that the Englishman was a beast of a defender in the Arsenal back-line. Arsenal brought in the former Spurs player in 2001 and was arguably one of the most controversial transfers in the history of the Premier League, but what a decision it was from Mr. Wenger. Campbell was an absolute rock in the Arsenal defence and was voted by tens of thousands of fans worldwide as the 15th greatest Arsenal player of all-time. The 6’ 2’’ defender spent 5 years at Arsenal from 2001 to 2006, where he picked up 2 Premier League titles, 3 F.A. Cups and was apart of the invincible side in the 2003/04 season and was also in the team who took part in the clubs only Champions League final. Sol Campbell resigned for Arsenal in January 2009 and proved to doubters that the Englishman can still cut it in the top-flight. Campbell has made 209 appearances for the club and also netted 10 goals as well, not bad for a centre-back. A real rock of a defender, and it was a shame him and Adams were not in the same Arsenal line-up, I don’t think they would have conceded a goal! Ok that maybe a bit of an exaggeration, but still what a force that would have been.

Lauren (Right-Back)

Traditionally Lauren was a right sided-midfielder but When Wenger acquired him in the summer of 2000, the Frenchman thought it would be best to convert the former Cameroonian international into a right full-back. Wenger’s decision proved to be a first-rate one as Lauren went onto to become one of the clubs best in the designated position…certainly the best foreign player to play in the specified slot. The Cameroonian was a consistent performer, who possessed good pace, stamina and agility and proved to be an intricate part of ‘The Invincibles’ in the 2003/04 season. Lauren spent 7 years modelling the Arsenal shirt where he made a total of 238 appearances for the Gunners. The tenacious right-back managed to pick up 4 major trophies (2 Premier League titles and 3 F.A. Cups) and was also a crowd favourite. Without a doubt, his consistency and determination eclipsed the likes of current Arsenal full-backs Emmanuel Eboue and Bacary Sagna. Lauren was the best foreign player ever to play in the Lee Dixon and Pat Rice role.

Find out who made the midfield on page 2

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7 comments

  • Sheamus says:

    Good line-up, although there are a lot of iconic figures left out of this squad, Keown, Brady, Smith etc

  • Didi says:

    I could imagine this being very hard to choose an all time best eleven. So many great players not mentioned like Keown, Bould, Dixon, Winterburn, Parlour, Wright, Overmarz and so forth. I personally would have changed Dixon for Lauren and possibly Keown for Campbell but this would be very closse.

    Quality line up anyway.

  • Tom says:

    Badly written and ill informed which just about sums up this pointless website. Had to close bout 4 pop ups before I got to the end of this drivel. Online “journalism” my arse!

  • GunnerPete says:

    As a 69 year old Gunner( I saw my first game aged 7) I would like to inject a more considered, and long view of our best ever. It is so easy to pick only from the past 30 years but when you can go back 1949/50, you can be more acurate to the quest. After dragging through my memories my best eleven are as follows and below that are my second best !?

    Goal = Jack Kelsey (without doubt) Finest comtroller of his area before Jennings.

    RB = Eddie Happgood (never saw him but can only go by the awe expressed by supporters of Man U, Newcastle, Villa, Spurs etc who raved about him )

    LB = Kenny Sansom…I have never seen better.

    RCB = Steve Bould, He turned the talented Arsenal into the best unit ever seen.

    LCB = Tony Adams, this was so hard as we have had people like Mercer, Simpson, McLintock etc to think of )

    RMF = Alex James (no doubt)

    CMF = Cesc Fabregas

    LMF = Thiery Henry

    Twin CF = Dennis BergKamp & Ted Drake.

    This team would not need a DM Because with this back five. The miffield would be so dominant that it would be a miracle if the opposition would touch the ball. As for the front two…well I saw Ted Drake and he was the greatest Ive ever seen, and Dennis B, well just think of the play between the MF and the front two with him in charge?

    So many players from the past to mention that nearly got in ie; Someone who is never mentioned John McLeod, Danny Clapton, Pete Simpson, Bob McNab, Eddie Kelly, Bob Wilson, Tommy Docherty, Joe baker, George Eastham, Cliff Bastin, The Comptons, Dave Bowen, Eric Tapscott, Ray Kennedy, Liam Brady, John Radford, Ian Wright.Dave Rocastle, Dave Seaman, .And I can go on for ever.

    Finally, I would like to state right now that if those Englishmen above were available, they would walk into this present team and play for next to nothing too. Sadly most of them were overlooked in favour of Liverpool and Manchester players who the press screamed for.

  • GunnerPete says:

    Sorry missed our Dave Bowen from my MF. He would have ben captain and the general !

  • Alastair says:

    Ok, love these though its almost impossible to name “the best” ever 11 but here is my Fav 11

    Goalkeeper:
    Dave Seaman: probably the best all round keeper AFC have ever had though big Pat would push him hard.

    Right Back:
    Lee Dixon. A true defender, bled for the cause and every left sided opponenet knew he had been in a contest when coming off from 90 mins against Lee. He could take players on and linked well with the midfield.

    Left Back:
    Unfortunately I have to say Cashley Cole, quick, intellegent(apart from signing for Chelski) and good both defending and going forwards

    Centre Back:
    The Iconic Tony Adams who grew in stature through his careerand would die for the cause. A true DEFENDER and the Captain.

    Centre Back:
    Frank McLintock, another that would die for the cause and lead by example. His distribution was good and one of those that would have been able to transfer his talents from the 70’s to now.

    Left Midfield:
    “bob” Pires, techically fantastic, cut inside with deftness and skill and loved to bang one in against the yids. He was magnificant and had it all, pace, skill, intellegence and an eye for the goal.

    Central Midfield:
    Patrick Vieira, led by example pulling the team together and knitting defence to attack. His bursts from central midfield were almost unstoppable and he ran all 90 minutes. Skillful too and could pick a pass.

    Central Midfield:
    Paul Davis is overlooked in this position but his eye for a pass and his ability to close the opposition down was never fully realised and we did not properly replace him till Mr Vieira pulled on an Arsenal shirt. He was stylish but could put his foot in. A real general in the middle of the park.

    Right Midfield:
    The most talented and gifted man to have worn the number 7 David Rocastle. It was a huge tussle between him and Liam Brady but much as it pains me to leave the mercurial talent of Liam Brady out Rocky had it all, talent, skill, pace, an eye for goal and the ability to track back made him the best all round right sided midfielder to have ever worn an AFC shirt. Much loved and badly missed the right side must go to Rocky Rocastle.

    Forward:
    Dennis Bergkamp. The other position up front is up for grabs but dennis has to be there. His ability to thread a pass, turn a defence and score the unscorable means his place in AFC history is guaranteed. He tracked back, ran his heart out and which ever partner played alongside him knew he would be given the chance to score simply because he had Dennis alongside him. A master pure and simple. Number 10 belonged to this man.

    Forward:
    A real hard choice, Ian Wright was 5 years too late at AFC and had he got there earlier he would have got this slot. Ted Drake and John Radford were your traditional No 9’s and class but this slot has to go to Thierry Henry. His lightning pace was the final piece to Dennis’s armoury and he frightened the opposition and made them change their playing style…extrodinary to think he possessed that ability. His ability to score from anywhere at any time means he will live forever as a true hero to all that saw him and he breathes Arsenal Football Club.

    Subs:
    1) Pat Jennings: a great keeper, safe hands
    2) Martin Keown: Able to fill in at right back or centre half. Another who bled for the club
    3) Liam Brady: only missed out due to Rocky, a talent pure and simple
    4) Marc Overmars: Pace, skill and goals galore
    5) Ian Wright, quite simply the best penalty box striker I have ever seen.

    manager: Arsene Wenger, he is quite simply the best manager AFC have ever had and we need to stay faithful to this intellegent insightful frenchman who has turned this club into a brand.

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