Arsenal name a starting XI without a player to have made at least a single appearance under Arsene Wenger for the first time in 37 YEARS as Fabio Vieira is chosen to start over Granit Xhaka
- Granit Xhaka has been replaced by Fabio Vieira in the side to face Bournemouth
- Move means team has been named without a player who played under Wenger
- Arsenal take on Bournemouth on Saturday looking to restore advantage at top
Arsenal have named a team without a player who made at least a single appearance under Arsene Wenger for the first time since 1986.
The rather alarming statistic emerged after Mikel Arteta’s side was released ahead of Arsenal’s clash with Bournemouth, which kicks off at 3pm on Saturday.
Harvey Downes, an Opta statto, made the revelation that Granit Xhaka’s dropping from the Arsenal side for Fabio Vieira marked a significant break with the club’s both recent and very distant history.
‘Arsenal have named a starting XI without a single player to have made a competitive appearance under Arsene Wenger for the first time since 22nd January 1986 vs Aston Villa in the League Cup,’ he tweeted.
Arsenal’s team for their clash against Villa on that rather bitter January evening in 1986 was as follows: Rhys Wilmot; Viv Anderson, David O’Leary, Kenny Sansom; Tommy Caton, Graham Rix, Stewart Robson, David Rocastle; Ian Allinson, Charlie Nicholas, Niall Quinn
Mikel Arteta has named a side that breaks an extremely long run of tradition for Arsenal
The side Arteta named sees a team without a player to have played under Wenger at Arsenal
Arsene Wenger was the Arsenal boss between 1996 and 2018 before handing the reigns over
Wenger was in charge of Arsenal for 22 years between 1996 and 2018.
Of the first team regulars, only a handful remain who played under the legendary former boss. They include Xhaka, Mohamed Elneny, Eddie Nketiah and Rob Holding.
Arteta’s initial days as Arsenal boss were defined by his attempts to move on various members of the club’s playing squad who were perceived to perhaps be holding the club back and its attempts to try and compete once more.
The Gunners are looking to reassert their five-point advantage at the top of the Premier League after Manchester City defeated Newcastle 2-0 in the Premier League’s early kick-off.
They are looking to extend their three-game winning streak, having also kept consecutive clean sheets.
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