Summer break: Mertesacker enters the final year of his contract in July

By Amir Mir

Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker has revealed manager Arsene Wenger has yet to decide on the captain for the up and coming Premier League season after the retirement of stalwart Mikel Arteta.

The German international wore the armband last season when Arteta was out injured, but insists he has not been informed of who will lead the team in the upcoming campaign.

“No, I cannot confirm that. There’s nothing to say about that from my side, because I’m not going to decide that,” Mertesacker told ESPN.

The 31-year-old was speaking after his side drew 1-1 in their opening pre-season fixture against France’s second division side RC Lens with winger Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain netting a late equaliser.

Reports have suggested Mertesacker will be handed the captaincy ahead of other senior players such as Petr Cech and Granit Xhaka.

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The north London club have been widely criticised for their lack of toughness as Wenger’s side have failed to lift the Premier League trophy in 12 years.

But, their experienced defender believes everyone has to take responsibility and the players have to respect the manager’s decision making.

“Everyone needs to take responsibility, especially in preseason and show himself from his best side. I think everyone does it,” said Arsenal’s centre-back. “And in the end, the manager makes his decisions on that front, who’s going to play and what are his plans for next season and for the future.”

“I think there’s a lot more to discuss that are more interesting than the captain’s armband. I get along with any decision he takes because for me it doesn’t matter if I wear the band or not.”

Arsenal kick-off their season at home with a mouth-watering showdown against Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool on August 14.

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