Arsenal: Gunners' 10 Worst Players of the Premier League Era

Omar AlmasriCorrespondent IIOctober 10, 2011

Arsenal: Gunners' 10 Worst Players of the Premier League Era

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    Arsenal has had many talented and great players over the years, from the legendary Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp, Tony Adams, Patrick Vieira, David Seaman, Robert Pires, etc., etc., etc., etc., etc.

    They've provided of the greatest moments in the club's history and are considered among the best that have ever graced the Premier League, ever since its inception on February 20, 1992. 

    Unfortunately, the club has also provided players who were not up to scratch and failed to live up to the club's expectations...

    So in this article, I'm going to list 10 players who are among the worst to ever play for the club in the Premier League era.

    Of course, this is going to spark some debate, perhaps even anger, but I hope it's a good read—please share your thoughts at the end of the article.

Denilson

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    The self-proclaimed "winner" who gave me panic attacks every time he played. 

    The Brazilian midfielder, who arrived from Sao Paulo with a good reputation as Brazil's U-17 skipper, was expected to become a star player for the Gunners.

    He began his career well, being one of the key members in the club's run to the Carling Cup in 2007 and providing a few good performances in the 2007-2008 season.

    But he never maintained his consistency, and his career with Arsenal was marred by sideways passing, an inability to control the midfield, his fragile physical state and his constant errors.

    He has been offloaded to Sao Paulo on loan and he hasn't had the best of times there, with fans already wanting him out due to his poor performances—and a tweet which he'll probably regret ever tweeting.

Igor Stepanovs

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    The Latvian defender was a surprise signing by coach Arsene Wenger and is remembered by Arsenal fans for his shocking performance against Manchester United in their humiliating 6-1 defeat.

    Stepanovs actually had a good start with the club, even scoring a goal in the League Cup loss against Ipswich.

    But after his poor performance against Manchester United, the Latvian never received much playing time and was never good enough to play for a club of Arsenal's stature; he left after three tough years with the club.

Mikael Silvestre

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    Another player who Wenger surprisingly signed from rivals Manchester United and which he will always regret.

    Silvestre isn't a bad defender as he proved with the Red Devils and with the French national side, but when Arsenal bought him; they were buying a player who can't play at the same rate as he used to.

    Basically and bluntly, the club bought a player who was finished.

    The former French international was a disastrous signing, displaying lack of pace, awareness and ability to defend. 

    He made numerous mistakes and has to be one of the worst players to ever put on the Arsenal shirt.

Francis Jeffers

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    One of Wenger's most expensive signings in his 15-year career as manager, and it backfired.

    Francis Jeffers, who was considered a player for the future at Everton and a "fox in the box" type of player, didn't show some or any of his talent during his time with the Gunners, and didn't score much.

    For someone who cost a good amount of money, he never repaid the faith and even ended his career with the Gunners with a red card in 2003 FA Community Shield.

    A major, major flop. 

Richard Wright

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    Another English talent who flopped miserably with the Gunners.

    Richard Wright was supposed to be David Seaman's future successor, after arriving from Ipswich in a fee which was reported to be around 6 million pounds in the summer of 2001.

    Despite Seaman's injury which gave an extended run of matches, Wright didn't take advantage.

    He will be forever be known as the player who punched the ball to his own net against Charlton, in the 4-2 loss at home at Highbury.

    Wright didn't play much after that and left at the end of the season.

Sebastian Squillaci

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    A French defender who signed with the Gunners last season from Sevilla and hasn't played a match so far this season. Arsenal fans are hoping that it stays that way.

    Squillaci arrived at the club with a good CV, winning numerous titles with both Lyon and Sevilla, and actually looked like a shrewd signing by Wenger. 

    But again he proved to be a massive disappointment, with his mix-up with Manuel Almunia against West Brom last season still an unpleasant memory among Gooners.

Manuel Almunia

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    The Spanish goalkeeper who arrived at the club after being a backup at Celta Vigo to the current Barcelona backup keeper Jose Manuel Pinto. That statement says it all.... Almunia was never meant to be a number one keeper at a top club.

    To be honest, Almunia did have his good moments with his performances in the Champions League against Manchester United in 2009, Barcelona in the first leg (2010) and second leg (2011), and against Chelsea in the Premier League (2008).

    But these performance were few and far between, Almunia didn't maintain consistency and he didn't show the mentality to be a keeper for a top-level club.

    He made costly errors over the years, with his last against West Brom last season.

    Almunia is now playing on loan with West Ham.

Kaba Diawara

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    Another player Wenger surprisingly signed in 1999.

    French forward Kaba Diawara arrived from Bordeaux with a not really impressive CV, especially for a top club; there were doubts if he could succeed with a top club such as Arsenal.

    And he proved the doubters correct.

    Diawara never scored a goal for the club and left at the end of the season.

Glenn Helder

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    George Graham's final signing as Arsenal manager, and what a flop he turned out to be.

    The left winger never impressed during his two years with the Gunners, scoring just one goal and enduring many personal problems.

    The Dutchman  revealed that he contemplated suicide due to his gambling problems and spent time in prison in 2007,after threatening his ex-girlfriend and abusing her partner.

    Helder was simply a mess, but if you want to have a glimpse of him, you can as he plays for Arsenal in Master Football tournaments.

Philippe Senderos

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    Many thought this Swiss defender would become a star for the Gunners, after his role in leading the club to the Champions League final in 2006.

    Senderos was actually a good prospect who put in an impressive showing with the club. But after he suffered a dislocated shoulder against South Korea in the 2006 World Cup, things fell apart for him.

    Senderos was no longer the same player and struggled to get back to his form. He struggled,  and his error in the loss against Liverpool in the 2009 Champions League quarterfinal was the final straw, with him leaving the club.

    Senderos never retained his 2006 form and probably never will.

More Flops + Conclusion

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    I've listed only 10 players so far, but here are more players who didn't have the best of times with the Gunners:

    Amaury Bischoff—Does anyone remember him? Barely played a match and left at the end of the season.

    Alberto Mendez— A German midfielder of Spanish descent who arrived from German non-league side SC Feucht. Spent five years with the Gunners, making only 11 appearances.

    Stefan Malz— A German midfielder who arrived from TSV 1860 Munchen. Spent two years with the Gunners, making just eight appearances and scoring two goals.

    Rami Shaaban—Swedish goalkeeper of Egyptian descent who never was good enough to play for a top club.

    Davor Suker—The Croatian legend and a lethal goalscorer, arrived at the club during his waning years and never displayed his 1998 World Cup form.

    Debatable:

    John Jensen—A signing which cost George Graham his job. The Danish holding midlfielder who starred in Denmark's Euro 1992 triumph is remembered for scoring his one goal for the club after around 100 matches of trying. T-Shirts and chants of, " I was there when John Jensen scored" is still remembered till this day.

    Pascal Cygan—The French defender who arrived at the club with an excellent reputation from his previous club, Lille. Cygan never had the easiest times with the Gunners, and looked shaky at times making some costly errors. But nevertheless, he did have some good performances with the club and had a role in Arsenal's Invincible season.

    Marouane Chamakh—The Moroccan striker who arrived from Bordeaux on a free transfer last season. Chamakh started the season well, but after Robin van Persie returned from injury, the wheels fell off and he hasn't looked the same since, looking sluggish with a lack of confidence in his play.

    So what do you all think? Who do you think should be on this list?

    Cheers,

    Omar

    Twitter: @OAlmasri

    http://www.o-posts.net