Plenty of deserved criticism has been directed towards the current crop of Arsenal players. Whether they’ll be able to see the season out or not is another matter, but should the campaign end now, then rightfully there will questions asked of this squad. More than have already been directed north London’s way.
Throughout the Premier League era, however, there has been no doubting that a healthy handful of stars have graced the division donning the red and white. Many of whom earned legacies for their longevity and commitment, and many for their contributions in key moments.
Not just just once in a blue moon though. I’m talking about stepping up to the plate more than once when the time called for it. The grandest of stages. The toughest of battles. The moments when you needed an individual to grab the proverbial bull by the horns and deliver.
There were a few. And here they are.
Kicking off with the obvious: Arsenal
Henry’s ability can never be understated, and it’s likely we’ve never see a player of his ilk feature in this league again. He was that good.
More importantly – and for this segment in particular – he did it in big games. Not finals though, granted, but whether it was Liverpool, Manchester United or Real Madrid, Henry always turned up. That’s one of the umpteen reasons why he was the best.
Most Clutch Moment: S
Loved by all supporters – despite his ill-fated spell as head coach – you will struggle to hear any Arsenal fan have a bad word to say about the Swedish midfielder.
He endeared himself to his new fanbase with a debut strike against United in 1998, setting the tone for what would be fruitful career and relationship with the north London club.
What he also was though, was a man for the big occasion, scoring some memorable goals throughout his Gunners career.
Most Clutch Moment:
One of the greatest captains the Premier League has ever seen, rarely ever did he let his guard down when he most needed. He was a leader in every sense, both on and off the pitch.
What Arsenal would do now for a captain like Patrick Vieira. Few other midfielders in the Premier League were quite as complete as the Frenchman.
He could tackle and pass, score and create – everything. He was never afraid to put his body on the line, and inspired his teammates to achieve great success during his wonderful spell in north London.
Another player who always turned up for the big moments, he was reliable in every sense, and rightfully heralded as one of the Premier League’s greatest midfielders and captains.
Most Clutch Moment: After a battling FA Cup final in which Arsenal found themselves under the cosh for much of the 120-minute encounter against United, it was Vieira’s composed final penalty that handed Arsene Wenger’s side a famous title. And incidentally, it was his final touch as an Arsenal player.
Perhaps a surprise name to those who don’t follow the club – especially given the manner of his exit – there is no questioning whether or not Laurent Koscienly was a big game player.
Chasing a top four spot in both the 2011/12 and 2012/13 seasons, the French centre-half scored pivotal goals in wins over West Brom and Newcastle respectively that ensured the club secured a Champions League berth on the final day of both Premier League campaigns.
There is no doubting Koscielny’s ability when he was in his prime, so we’ll brush over the sour notes and instead laud the club’s former captain. Only briefly however; since it’s, well, impossible to forget.
Most Clutch Moment: Having found themselves two goals down to Hull City in the 2014 FA Cup final, Koscielny’s equaliser forged the path for a memorable comeback success.
Joining the club from Barcelona aged just 16, Cesc Fabregas’ spell in north London gradually grew into a love affair that would see him
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