Arsenal

Mikel Arteta claims Arsenal are the best team at ‘everything’ – apart from scoring goals… as the Gunners look to snap a three-game losing streak and get their Premier League title charge back on track

Former Arsenal midfielder Parlour finds it almost impossible to bench an Invincible team-mate for a current Gunners star

Mikel Arteta’s current Arsenal squad has made a whole generation of fans believe again. After finishing second last campaign and spending big on players including Declan Rice in the summer, Gunners feel this side is capable of challenging of challenging for the Premier League title again this season.

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‘When he’s flying, he probably just about edges it’ – Arsenal legend Ray Parlour picks the only member of Mikel Arteta’s squad that would have started for the Invincibles
By Ed McCambridge published about 24 hours ago
Former Arsenal midfielder Parlour finds it almost impossible to bench an Invincible team-mate for a current Gunners star

 

Arsenal legend Ray Parlour is a huge fan of Bukayo Saka
(Image credit: Getty Images)
Mikel Arteta’s current Arsenal squad has made a whole generation of fans believe again. After finishing second last campaign and spending big on players including Declan Rice in the summer, Gunners feel this side is capable of challenging of challenging for the Premier League title again this season.

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Yet Arsenal fans of a certain vintage will probably tell you that Arteta’s side can’t hold a candle to the greatest Arsene Wenger sides. The Invincibles, who went the entire 2003-04 Premier League campaign unbeaten en route to the title, were so good that Ray Parlour reckons only a single current Arsenal star would have broken into that team.

“It’s tough because this Arsenal squad is so good, but there was so much quality in that Invincibles side,” Parlour tells FourFourTwo on behalf of NetBet Betting. “Take the centre-backs for instance: William Saliba is having another brilliant season and a brilliant Arsenal career so far, but Sol Campbell and Kolo Toure were rock solid.

Declan Rice would have done an excellent job in our midfield but it would be hard to tell Gilberto Silva he doesn’t deserve to play, wouldn’t it?” He continues. “I used to call him the ‘Invisible Wall’ because he was such a force in that midfield but people barely noticed him until he was missing. He was fantastic.”

But Parlour does believe one player would have made the cut: Bukayo Saka. Even so, the former midfielder believes Saka would have only just edged out the Invincible that played on the right wing under Wenger.

When he’s in top form, though, you’d have to have Bukayo Saka on the right hand side,” Parlour reflects. “Freddie Ljungberg was a brilliant player, but I suppose you’d have to put Saka just in front of him. When he’s on top form, that is. He hasn’t been in that red hot form over the past few weeks but there’s no denying that he’s a world-class talent when he’s on top form. When he’s flying, he probably just edges Freddie out.

“But that’s the problem with ousting anyone from that Invincibles side. It was the consistency that made that team special. Freddie didn’t have bad games – or very few. You were almost certain you’d get a big performance out of him week-in, week-out.”

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