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Wenger's Arsenal - 5 tops, 5 flops, 5 might-have-beens

Arsene Wenger has brought in literally hundreds of players since his time as Arsenal manager. Here's 5 who did well, 5 who didn't and 5 who might have been.

Quotes from Arsene Wenger

5 Tops

Robin van Persie, Arsenal, 2004 - 2012

'Robin scored 30 goals last season and you want to keep your best players' (2012)

Thierry Henry, Arsenal, 1999 - 2007, loan 2012

'What makes him special ? He has a mixture of physical talent and technical ability, as well as remarkable intelligence and above all a great passion for the game'.

Cesc Fabregas, Arsenal, 2003 - 2011

'Cesc is a passionate guy, and what’s hurting him deeply is not playing every game'.

Patrick Vieira, Arsenal, 1996 - 2005

'I cannot replace Patrick Vieira because everyone expects me to sign another Patrick Vieira'.

Nicolas Anelka, Arsenal, 1997 - 1999

'He's like a PlayStation. I think he can take advantage of every mistake you make'.

5 Flops

Francis Jeffers, Arsenal, 2001 - 2004

'We were considering him (Ruud van Nistelrooy) and Francis Jeffers and, in the end, we went for Jeffers'.

Marouane Chamakh, Arsenal, 2010 - 2013

'I believe his influence on the team has not been highlighted enough because if you look at his numbers it’s quite impressive what he has brought to the team'.

Richard Wright, Arsenal, 2001 - 2002

'I promised Richard that I would play him in Cup games and I did it'.

Sebastien Squillaci, Arsenal 2010 - 2013

'Bendtner, Squillaci and Park will be on their way to go somewhere'.

José Antonio Reyes, Arsenal, 2004 - 2007

'We didn't think he would play on Sunday because he was suspended - that makes me think he has all the qualities to join Arsenal'.

5 Might-Have-Beens

Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who turned down a trial at Arsenal at the age of 20

'Something about Wenger set me off. He would leap up every so often to check who was outside his window. It seemed as if he wanted to keep an eye on everything, and he kept going on about one thing all the time'.

Xabi Alonso

Wenger baulked at Liverpool's £18m price tag in 2008

Juan Mata

Arsenal were closing in on the £17.5million signing of Mata from Valencia in 2011 - before Chelsea came calling.

Didier Drogba

It was in 2001 that Wenger thought of signing Drogba. But then he thought better of it and the rest, as they say, is history.

Petr Cech

'Before I went to Rennes (in 2002) I was watched by Arsenal but when I couldn't get a work permit the situation was missed', Cech told The Sun.

'And at the last minute I think the person who was the chief scout at Arsenal didn't think I was good enough for the English league. So in the end it didn't happen'.

image: © Matt and Kim Rudge

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