Football Features

Chelsea 6-0 Arsenal: Where are the players from Wenger’s 1,000th-game humiliation?

By Mohamed Moallim

Published: 11:24, 1 May 2023 | Updated: 12:04, 2 May 2023

It’s fair to say that the final 10 years of his career could have been kinder to Arsene Wenger, whose iron grip on Arsenal slowly loosened season by season.

That said, there was silverware. Three FA Cups across the last bundle of seasons is not too shabby. Then again, the many humiliating losses are not forgotten.

One that stands out came on March 22, 2014, the occasion of Wenger’s 1,000th Premier League match in charge. The game took place at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea with nemesis Jose Mourinho in the opposite dugout.

Two seasons prior, Arsenal were humbled 8-2 away to Manchester United. Against Chelsea, they would suffer the heaviest league against their west London rivals, who scored six without reply.

Samuel Eto’o, Andre Schurrle, Eden Hazard, Oscar (twice) and Mohamed Salah all got in on the act. Kieran Gibbs was infamously sent off by Andre Marriner, who mistook him for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain after the current Liverpool midfielder deliberately handled inside the penalty area.

And so, with so much having happened at both clubs since, the question is where are both those line-ups (and subs) now?


Petr Čech

Age: 40
Chelsea appearances: 494
Current club: Retired

It was not entirely a quiet afternoon for the Czech goalkeeper, who dealt with 11 shots on his goal, five of which were on target. Nonetheless, he recorded yet another Premier League clean sheet and would add many more. Number 200 – Cech is the first ‘keeper to achieve this milestone since the league’s inception – came against Watford while representing Arsenal, whom he joined in 2015 after 11 illustrious seasons with the Blues. He retired at the end of the 2018/19 campaign and returned to Chelsea as technical and performance advisor, leaving after Todd Boehly’s takeover of the club in 2022. Cech now plays semi-professional ice hockey for Chelmsford Chieftains.

Branislav Ivanović

Age: 39
Chelsea appearances: 377
Current Club: Retired

Ivanović joined Chelsea as a promising centre-back but he’d ultimately be converted into a reliable right-back.

His heart-on-sleeve performances earned him cult status among the Stamford Bridge faithful, who bid him farewell in early 2017 after nine years of impeccable service. The Serbian is now retired following spells with Zenit and West Brom.

Gary Cahill

Age: 37
Chelsea appearances: 290
Current Club: Retired

Signed from Bolton Wanderers midway through Chelsea’s Champions League-winning campaign of 2011/12, the Dronfield-born defender went from being a mainstay to the leader of the pack following John Terry’s departure. However, he was allowed to leave at the end of his contract in 2019 – after making just eight appearances in his final campaign under Maurizio Sarri. Now 37, Cahill recently hung up his boots following a couple of years with Crystal Palace and, finally, helping Bournemouth achieve promotion back to the Premier League

John Terry

Age: 42
Chelsea appearances: 696
Current Club: Retired

A club legend and a rare success story regarding the club’s reputed academy. Terry gave the majority of his playing career to Chelsea, the club that nurtured and developed him, which has seen the Londoner lift the Premier League title on no fewer than five occasions.

After deciding to end a 22-year association with his boyhood club, he chose to remain in England, opting for Aston Villa whom he tried to help in their quest to regain top division status. Villa lost in the play-off final against Fulham last season and Terry retired from the game shortly after. He is now Dean Smith’s assistant at Leicester City having performed the same role at Aston Villa.

César Azpilicueta

Age: 33
Chelsea appearances: 503
Current Club: Chelsea

Azpilicueta was two seasons into his Chelsea career when this rout occurred. The versatile defender, who is capable of playing across the backline, has proven to be a real success at the club. With Cahill out of favour, Azpilicueta took over on-pitch responsibility as captain and was handed the full role by Frank Lampard, who has kept the Spaniard in charge of the armband during his second spell. Azpilicueta recently surpassed the 500-game mark for Chelsea.

David Luiz

Age: 36
Chelsea appearances: 248
Current Club: Flamengo

It’s been a tale of two careers at Chelsea for the Brazilian central defender. During his first stint (2011-2014), which includes this game, Luiz became renowned for his eccentricity and unpredictability, which often got him into trouble.

He’d return from Paris Saint-Germain in 2016, subsequently becoming an ever-reliable presence in the Blues’ defence, although, his second exit came in the summer of 2019 — moving onto the other side of this round, joining Arsenal. Luiz remained at the Emirates for two seasons, playing 73 times and winning the FA Cup and Community Shield. He’s now back in Brazil lifting trophies with Flamengo.

Nemanja Matić

Age: 34
Chelsea appearances: 154
Current Club: Roma

A similar story to Luiz, who interestingly joined Chelsea with Matic going the other way to Benfica, the Serbian midfielder’s second spell at Stamford Bridge (which began in January 2014) was more eventual than his limited first (2009-2011).

Quietly establishing himself as the defensive fulcrum of the side, he’d soon be lauded among the best defensive midfielders around, but the Šabac-born forward would soon say goodbye, reuniting with former Blues boss Jose Mourinho at Manchester United. That love affair continued last summer as Mourinho brought Matic with him to Roma, where he has been an impressive force once again in midfield.

André Schürrle

Age: 32
Chelsea appearances: 65
Current Club: Retired

His transfer from Bundesliga side Bayer 04 Leverkusen in 2013 was seen as a coup but the German international never really settled. Despite showing glimpses of early promise, including in the 6-0 victory over Arsenal, he would ultimately return home in early 2015 by joining VfL Wolfsburg. A move to Dortmund followed but limited chances saw him tackle the Premier League once again, this time with struggling Fulham. However, he was unable to help the Cottagers stay up and embarked on another loan spell to Spartak Moscow before surprisingly announcing his retirement in July 2020 aged just 29.


Oscar in Chelsea training

Age: 31
Chelsea appearances: 203
Current Club: Shanghai SIPG

The highly promising playmaker made a stunning first impression after joining from Brazilian outfit Internacional in the summer of 2012. He’d bag a brace against Arsenal enhancing his reputation as one of the best number 10s in the Premier League, though Oscar would remain for two and a half more seasons before journeying to China where he continues to play.

Eden Hazard

Chelsea have been unable to replace Eden Hazard so far this season

Age: 32
Chelsea appearances: 352
Current Club: Real Madrid

A wanted man in the summer of 2012, the Belgian forward who had suitors across Europe, following another incredible season at Lille, eventually signed for Chelsea who had just recently become European champions. Chelsea once again lifted that title in 2021 but Hazard had already left for Real Madrid by then. In Spain, Hazard has won La Liga and Champions League crowns of his own though, individually, he’s endured a torrid time with injuries and poor form, scoring just seven goals in 75 appearances across three-and-a-half seasons so far.

Samuel Eto’o

Age: 42
Chelsea appearances: 35
Current Club: Retired

The much-travelled Cameronian marksman opened the scoring against Arsenal after five minutes but his stay at Stamford Bridge was limited to one season. Though he did leave having managed nine goals across 21 league outings, which included a hat-trick against Manchester United, a feat that had only been previously managed three times in the Premier League era. He is now retired, calling an end to his career in 2019 and going on to become president of the Cameroonian Football Federation.


John Mikel Obi

Age: 36
Chelsea appearances: 372
Current Club: Retired

By the time Mikel left Chelsea, he was one of their longest-serving players and respected member of the squad. Initially arriving as a playmaker, after signing for Manchester United before that contract became null and void, the Nigerian international was soon converted into a defensive midfielder under Jose Mourinho, a role he made his own throughout his decade at Stamford Bridge. After a spell in the Championship with Middlesbrough, Mikel moved to Turkish club Trabzonspor but ended his contract in March 2020 amid fears of having to play during the coronavirus pandemic. He is now retired.

Fernando Torres

Age: 39
Chelsea appearances: 172
Current Club: Retired

A record signing when he controversially swapped Liverpool for Chelsea in January 2011, the Spaniard never really hit the heights of his Anfield days but had his moments (notably his goal at the Camp Nou as Chelsea rolled into the 2012 European Cup final). A move back to Atletico Madrid followed before heading east to play for Japanese outfit Sagan Tosu. Torres called time on his playing career in 2019.

Mohamed Salah

Chelsea Mohamed Salah

Age: 30
Chelsea appearances: 19
Current Club: Liverpool

Liverpool and Chelsea battled for the Egyptian forward’s signature before he decided to take his talents from FC Basel to west London. It never worked out, though he did bag a rare goal in the 6-0 mauling of Arsenal, and limited playing time saw Salah join Fiorentina on loan before signing permanently with Roma. He’s now back in England, after the Reds finally got their man, and is considered one of the most talented attacking players on the planet.


Wojciech Szczęsny

Age: 33
Arsenal appearances: 181
Current Club: Juventus

For a while, it seemed Szczęsny, who endured a painful afternoon at Stamford Bridge, was going to be Arsenal’s long-term option between the sticks however manager Arsene Wenger had other ideas by signing Cech from their west London rivals.

He spent two seasons on loan at Serie A outfit Roma before joining Italian powerhouse Juventus permanently where he still plays today as number one.

Bacary Sagna

Age: 40
Arsenal appearances: 285
Current Club: Free agent

One of the first names on Wenger’s team sheet, before swapping Arsenal for Manchester City in the summer of 2014, the French right-back would play over 200 leagues games for the Gunners and after plying his trade in Serie A with lowly Benevento, moved to MLS side Montreal Impact. Sagna didn’t stay long in Canada and is now retired.

Per Mertesacker

Age: 38
Arsenal appearances: 221
Current Club: Retired

Finished his playing career at the end of the 2017/18 campaign, the ‘big friendly German’ assumed leadership of Arsenal’s youth academy.

A spate of injuries denied Mertesacker, who was officially the Gunners’ captain, regular playing time though he memorably put in a man-of-the-match performance in the 2017 FA Cup final.

Laurent Koscielny

Per Mertesacker Laurent Koscielny once formed Arsenal's CB partnership
Age: 37
Arsenal appearances: 353
Current Club: Bordeaux

A talented and often reliable centre-back, Koscielny predominantly produced for Arsenal and, for a while, the Frenchman was considered among the Premier League’s best central defenders. But his Arsenal spell was tainted in the eyes of some fans for the manner of his move to Bordeaux in 2019, particular in the way it was announced. Koscielny retired in 2022 but remains on the staff with Bordeaux.

Kieran Gibbs

Kieran Gibbs Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain Arsenal

Age: 33
Arsenal appearances: 229
Current Club: Inter Miami

Another who suffered because of injuries. Seen by many as Ashley Cole’s natural successor when he broke through into Wenger’s first team it’s fair to say Gibbs hasn’t lived up to his potential. No longer guaranteed regular playing time, Gibbs, who came through the club’s esteemed academy, relocated to West Brom but couldn’t help the Baggies avoid relegation to the Championship. Gibbs went on to play in MLS for Inter Miami before retiring after the 2022 season.

Tomáš Rosický

Age: 42
Arsenal appearances: 248
Current Club: Retired

The story of Rosický at Arsenal is one of what could have been. His appearance in the mauling at Stamford Bridge was one of 27 he made in the league that season, second most across a single campaign since joining from Borussia Dortmund in 2006, but going forward the Czech midfielder was rarely seen before he departed for boyhood club Sparta Prague whom he retired at in 2017.

Mikel Arteta

Cazorla and Arteta in Arsenal training

Age: 41
Arsenal appearances: 150
Current Club: Retired

A pattern is emerging. Arteta would play for two more seasons after the 2013/14 campaign. Injuries, that word again, ultimately forced him to hang up his boots. Since then he’s gone into coaching and today can be found in the dugout at Arsenal, replacing Unai Emery in late 2019 – via a Freddie Ljungberg caretaker spell. Arteta has quickly turned Arsenal into title challengers.

Santi Cazorla

Age: 38
Arsenal appearances: 180
Current Club: Al Sadd

Sidelined with a serious heel injury, which saw him undergo eight rounds of surgery on his Achilles, the Spanish midfielder – who fast became integral to Wenger’s side – returned to Spain in 2018, weaving his magic for Villarreal after an Arsenal career that could have been so much more. Cazorla was excellent for the Yellow Submarine and is now seeing out his career with Al Sadd in Qatar.

Lukas Podolski

Age: 37
Arsenal appearances: 82
Current Club: Górnik Zabrze

Another who arrived to a big fanfare, the Germany international struggled to hold down a starting berth under Wenger who often fielded him across the forward line. The 130-time capped German international would move on to Galatasaray, after three seasons with Arsenal, before stins in Japan with Vissel Kobe, Antalyaspor in Turkey and, now, Górnik Zabrze of Poland — the country of his birth.

Olivier Giroud

Age: 36
Arsenal appearances: 253
Current Club: AC Milan

So often maligned, the French striker had to wait, after proving his doubters wrong, before receiving the warmth of appreciation from Arsenal supporters. In the end, despite exceeding 100 goals for the club, he’d cross the London divide and join Chelsea in early 2018, but failed to produce the goals in a regular fashion. However, he has scored key goals for the Blues in his sporadic appearances – including against Arsenal in the 2019 Europa League final. And he won the 2018 World Cup.

Giroud now continues to roll back the years with AC Milan, scoring goals and winning a Serie A title while, at international level, reaching another World Cup final and becoming France’s all-time top goalscorer.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

Age: 29
Arsenal appearances: 198
Current Club: Liverpool

In the end, a lack of guaranteed playing time in his prefered position saw the Ox, who nearly amassed a double century of appearances with Arsenal, swap north London for Merseyside where he enjoyed his first season under Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool before injury struck at the end of the campaign. The story of his time at Anfield has not really changed since.


Thomas Vermaelen

Age: 37
Arsenal appearances: 150
Current Club: Retired

It started promising, and Vermaelen was even handed the captain’s armband, but he was another to be struck with the injury bug which led to Wenger cutting ties with the Belgian centre-back who struggled with injuries and game time at Barcelona before his move to Vissel Kobe. Vermaelen remained in Japan for three years and, incredibly, made Belgium’s Euro 2020 squad for the rearranged tournament in 2021 before finally retiring.

Carl Jenkinson

Age: 31
Arsenal appearances: 69
Current Club: Newcastle Jets

Bursting onto the scene full of promise, it just never happened for Jenkinson. After three loan spells, Jenkinson was allowed to leave the club he supports in 2019, joining Nottingham Forest in the Championship. It never worked out at Forest for Jenkinson, who now plays for A-League side Newcastle Jets.

Mathieu Flamini

Age: 39
Arsenal appearances: 246
Current Club: Retired

Before (you guessed it) the injuries piled up the French midfielder was destined to attain greatness. But he never quite reached what so many envisaged. Instead, a modest career would subsequently follow, he’d leave Arsenal before returning but is now retired after short spells with Crystal Palace and Getafe. Flamini is now an environmental entrepreneur.