MX23RW : Monday, September 24 14:31:10

Arsenal name defender Per Mertesacker as new captain

Arsenal name Per Mertesacker as the club's new captain following the departure of Mikel Arteta.

Arsenal have confirmed that defender Per Mertesacker has become the club's new captain following the departure of Mikel Arteta.

The German defender became the frontrunner to take the armband once Arteta joined Pep Guardiola's coaching team at Manchester City at the end of last season.

Mertesacker has been an Arsenal player for the last five years, making 149 appearances, and in that time winning two FA Cups.

However, he will miss the first few months of the new season due to a knee injury.

Manager Arsene Wenger told Arsenal Player: "Per is a very respected figure in the dressing room, is loved as well and is also a very demanding figure. I think it is absolutely natural [for the captain] to be [him].

"[In his absence] that's where it will be taken by the assistants. One of them will be Laurent Koscielny, also Santi Cazorla - the experienced players - Petr Cech maybe.

"We will have a group of people that will take care of the energy levels and the problems of the team. That will be down a lot to the experienced players."

Arsenal will begin their 2016-17 campaign with a clash against Liverpool at the Emirates tomorrow.

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Per Mertesacker of Arsenal celebrates at the end of the UEFA Champions League Qualifier 2nd leg match between Arsenal and Besiktas at the Emirates Stadium on August 27, 2014
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