Arsenal suffering from captain's curse

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The curse of the club captaincy at Arsenal has continued this season as the awarding of the armband to Thomas Vermaelen seems to have affected the player's performance.

Vermaelen could be joining the likes of; Thierry Henry, William Gallas, Cesc Fabregas and Robin van Persie, as the Belgium international could be on his way out of the Emirates Stadium in the summer, which means another captain would be leaving.

The Belgium centre-back has been dropped as the first-team defender after the 2-1 North London derby defeat and since then the Gunners have shown improvement at the back with Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker putting in a string of fine performances.

There have been nine games where Arsenal have been without Vermaelen and surprisingly they have won six of those matches and drawn the other three.

Wide reports have suggested that Wenger could be looking at selling the Belgian in the summer with Spanish giants Barcelona keen on his signature.

However the player himself has pleaded with Wenger to keep him at the club as he feels settled in London and at Arsenal.

So what is it with Arsenal and their captains? Four of the last delegated club captains have gone on to leave the club, which has meant new captains being chosen. The armband this year has clearly affected Vermaelen and it could seal his departure at the club also.

Below are the four recent captains that left Arsenal during their leadership.

Thierry Henry

Legend at the club and would never be bad-mouthed by Arsenal fans, however, he did leave the club when captain. He was the leader when they lost in the Champions League final in 2006 but the season after he left to join the side that beat them, Barcelona.

William Gallas

On the contrary to Henry, every Arsenal fan now dislikes him. Now playing for fierce rivals Tottenham, Gallas lost the armband after pulling a strop during the side's 2-2 draw with Birmingham, which led to the collapse of their season. Arsenal gave away a last minute penalty and their captain reacted by storming to the touchline and sitting down. He then dug the knife in further by questioning the side's mental strength and spirit. 

Cesc Fabregas

Captained at the tender age of 21 and was loved by many fans at the club, but with the armband came speculation that he wanted to return back to Barcelona. He eventually did leave Arsenal for Barcelona in 2011.

Robin van Persie

Sensationally good last season as the captain. Scoring goals and guiding them to a third-placed finished. However, the season ended on a sour note as he left the club for Manchester United.

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Thomas Vermaelen
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