Clichy supports Cesc choice

Gunners defender backing Fabregas

Clichy: Praise for Fabregas

Clichy: Praise for Fabregas

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Gael Clichy has hailed the appointment of Cesc Fabregas as Arsenal captain but also offered his support to former skipper William Gallas.

Arsene Wenger announced earlier on Monday that Fabregas would be wearing the armband from now on, following Gallas' public criticism of his team-mates last week.

Clichy has been impressed by Fabregas' character and quality in recent years and believes the Spaniard will be excellent in his new role.

"It is a new start and I am sure Cesc will do well," the left-back told Sky Sports News.

"He has been fantastic for us over the last couple of seasons. I think it is a good choice from the boss and I am sure all the players will give all their support.

"When we were losing 1-0 to Sunderland this season and he scored to get us the draw, that showed his character.

"He is a major player for Arsenal."

Spirit

Arsenal lost 3-0 to Manchester City at the weekend but Clichy has dismissed suggestions that morale in the camp is particularly low following Gallas' comments.

"When the results are not good enough the spirit is a bit down but that is the same anywhere and we know tomorrow is a massive game," he added.

The Gunners face Dynamo Kiev in a crucial UEFA Champions League game on Tuesday and Wenger has confirmed that Gallas will feature.

Clichy is backing his French compatriot to play a key part for Arsenal this season despite losing the captaincy.

Gallas' position as leader had been under scrutiny ever since his sit-down protest at Birmingham in February, but Clichy insists he is still a valued member of the squad.

Respect

Clichy said: "It is unlucky what has happened to William. I want to say that I respect William, he is a great player.

"Maybe some people will say he shouldn't have said things but I want to say to the fans that we all respect William and if he plays tomorrow he will add more experience to the team.

"Last year was not a good year because we did not win anything but for seven months we were at the top and William did not have many critics.

"We had one bad day when things happened (against Birmingham) and since that day the media have been trying to get things in the head of people, saying William is not good enough.

"He has been sensational for us and I really hope he can play his best football for us because we need him."