With major football leagues brought to a halt by the Coronavirus pandemic, we think it’s time that we take a look at some of the best players to play for some of England’s biggest clubs during the Premier League era.
Here’s our take on Arsenal’s 10 best defenders during this era, whilst the Gunners have been a little shaky at the back in recent years, they’ve had some real stalwarts in defence during the reformed top-flight’s history…
Cameroon star Lauren joined Arsenal in the summer of 2000 and established himself as a legend during seven years with the Gunners.
The right-back was a mainstay in Arsenal’s phenomenal Invincibles side, the full-back won two league titles and three FA Cups during his time with the north London outfit.
The full-back made 159 top-flight appearances for the Gunners, the ace’s reliability is something that the side have really missed over the last couple of years.
9. Per Mertesacker
The gigantic centre-back arrived at Arsenal in the summer of 2011 and enjoyed seven years with the Gunners, the Germany international’s dedication to the club is unmatched, with the ace now playing a key role within the club’s academy since retiring.
Mertesacker was a solid defender for the Gunners, the ace was one of the league’s top defenders for several years despite having very little pace to work with.
The big friendly giant forged a solid defensive partnership with Laurent Koscielny and this duo perhaps could’ve led to the team to more success if it wasn’t for injuries.
8. Bacary Sagna
After arriving from France, Sagna quickly established himself as one of the best right-back’s in the Premier League, the ace’s tireless runs up and down the right flank helped Arsenal’s fierce attackers flourish.
Sagna’s seven-year spell with the Gunners came to a sour end, with the Frenchman deciding to join Manchester City on a free transfer.
Sagna’s fine performances for the north London outfit won him 65 caps for France, the ace made 285 appearances across all competitions for the Gunners.
7. Kolo Toure
The Ivorian centre-back’s career is perhaps vastly underrated, today’s younger fans only see the ace for his likeable personality, but before all this Kolo was a no-nonsense defender that was a real asset for Arsenal.
We’ve all heard some of the crazy training ground stories about Toure, but this really transcended to his play on the pitch – the defender certainly didn’t hold back from any challenges.
After seven successful years with the Gunners the ace joined Manchester City, many of Arsenal’s top defenders of this century like Bacary Sagna and Gael Clichy soured their relationship with fans by joining the Citizens.
Kolo had the chance to play alongside his younger brother Yaya at City.