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Name Per Mertesacker
Gender Male
Ethnic German
Job German Footballer
  Arsenal Captain
Desc Per Mertesacker might be the slowest player on this list. However, he’s also one of the smartest. Mertesacker’s speed of thought makes up his slowness of foot. After a shaky start, he is emerging as a centre-half in the great Arsenal tradition


Club as Player Arsenal FC

2017 07 15 Retrieve

[Per Mertesacker reveals the inspiration behind his unlikely overhead kick during a pre-season match against Sydney FC] In Germany, we had a goalscorer, his name was Gerd Muller. He scored like that 80 per cent of the time, always with his back to the goal. He was my role model in that situation

2017 08 19 Retrieve

[Per Mertesacker talks about life in London] That’s what I love, getting the tube, not getting any recognition, trying to be as normal as possible. Sometimes you get a big Arsenal fan and they tell you they have a season ticket or want to have a chat, which is fine. Some want a selfie, but sometimes I just want to say: ‘Let’s just shake hands. It means more than a picture’. But not a lot of guys ever think that way!

2019 11 11 Retrieve

[Per Mertesacker praises Mikel Arteta] I was his vice-captain at Arsenal and he trusted me. I was by his side during team meetings and we had a great bond. I’d love to work with him again. [He is] a top guy

[Per Mertesacker praises Arsene Wenger, who was appointed last week as the new Head of Football Development at Fifa] He has an aura – it’s difficult to explain. He demands a lot, but makes you feel comfortable, too. It’s about trust. In hard times, he was a rock protecting us. I’ll always be very grateful to him