Former Arsenal and England midfielder Jack Wilshere believes that Rob Holding has the potential to captain the Gunners in the future.
The now-West Ham star has earmarked Holding not only to be a key player for the club but also to one day lead them.
Is Rob Holding captain material? Five key things to know…
- Holding came through the youth academy at Bolton.
- He played 26 times in the Championship for the Trotters in 2015-16.
- He was signed by Arsenal in the summer of 2016 for £2m.
- He played 10 times for the Gunners last season before injuring his cruciate ligament and missing the rest of the season.
- His former-teammate Jack Wilshere believes he can be the future Arsenal captain.
“Arsenal will have Rob Holding coming back and Hector [Bellerin]. They did their cruciates – and sometimes when you do your cruciate you actually come back stronger – because you have to work on your strength and quads which actually strengthen you more,” the West Ham man told football.london.
“Rob Holding was playing so well before he got injured and will be a great addition to their defence once he’s fit again. I really think he could be a potential Arsenal captain of the future.”
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A defensive headache for Emery
The Gunners were hoping Holding would be back in training before the start of pre-season but it now appears that he will miss the start of the new campaign along with teammate, Hector Bellerin.
Holding has slowly been edging his way into contention at the Emirates over the last couple of seasons but a serious knee injury forced him to undergo surgery and miss the season from November onwards in 2018-19.
Unai Emery may utilise the defender should he make a full recovery as planned this season and with Laurent Koscielny’s time at the club seemingly over, it could open the door for the 23-year-old.
The Arsenal captain refused to join the squad for pre-season training in America and is thought to be angling for a move away from the club amid interest from Bordeaux.
The 33-year-old shocked Arsenal by taking such drastic action especially considering his influential position within the squad.
The Gunners released a statement regarding the situation condemning the Frenchman’s actions saying: “We are very disappointed by Laurent’s actions, which are against our clear instructions.
“We hope to resolve this matter and will not be providing any further comment at this time.”
Arsenal are now without a captain and attention has already turned to who could be the next man to fill the role.
When he was appointed manager last summer, Unai Emery named five players as his captains but Koscielny is now set to leave, Petr Czech has retired, Mesut Ozil is on the periphery, Aaron Ramsey is now playing in Italy leaving only Granit Xhaka.
However, former Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere believes Rob Holding should be considered for the role, if not now, then in the near future.
After a promising start to the season, @RobHolding95 was stretchered off the pitch at Old Trafford in December.
But now he's on his way back.https://t.co/t0kZKMvCMA
— OfficialAFC_US (@OfficialAFC_US) June 28, 2019
Arsenal travel to St James Park for their opening Premier League fixture to take on Newcastle United on 11 August.