Theo Walcott believes Sol Campbell is deserving of a statue exterior the Emirates Stadium for what he achieved at Arsenal.
Campbell joined the Gunners in 2001 on a extremely controversial free switch from Tottenham – one thing he nonetheless will get abused about to today.
He went on to make 197 appearances for Arsenal over 5 seasons and delivered two Premier League titles, two FA Cups and scored in a Champions League remaining.
The centre-back was a part of their well-known Invincibles marketing campaign and was among the best defenders on the earth in his heyday.
Arsenal have commemorated 5 legends with statues exterior their stadium; Tony Adams, Dennis Bergkamp, Herbert Chapman, Ken Friar and Thierry Henry.
Henry and Bergkamp have been additionally a part of the 2003/04 unbeaten title-winning marketing campaign and Walcott was requested the place Campbell ranks within the record of Arsenal legends.
“It’s exhausting to check Sol to folks like Thierry. Numerous folks take a look at strikers, they at all times do,” Walcott mentioned in a particular new talkSPORT, Being Sol Campbell.
“However Sol, for me… the very fact he’s gone from Tottenham and the quantity of stick he obtained transferring to Arsenal after which wins the whole lot and scores within the Champions League remaining.
“He would rank slightly below Thierry, due to Thierry being my idol and what he did for me.
“Sol was 100 per cent extra of a frontrunner than Thierry.
“I’m fairly stunned that Sol hasn’t obtained a statue as effectively, as a result of that’s the type of impression he delivered to Arsenal.”
Campbell was additionally a part of England’s famed ‘Golden Era’, making 73 performances between 1996 and 2007.
However he captained his nation simply thrice with Alan Shearer and David Beckham the everlasting captains throughout that interval.
Walcott mentioned: “73 caps and to captain your nationwide group thrice is embarrassing. I don’t get it.
“Whoever is captain, yep in their very own proper could also be good. For me, there was no higher chief than Sol as a result of he left the whole lot on the sphere.
“Each time we got here out of a sport his entire equipment was drenched and dust in every single place, his face had blood on it. That’s how a lot it meant to him, to solely captain England thrice, for me, is actually irritating and actually hurts. He ought to have captained many extra events.”
Campbell wrote in his autobiography that he would have been captain of England ‘for greater than 10 years’ had he been white, pointing to the very fact Michael Owen captained the aspect eight occasions.
In a particular talkSPORT documentary aired this Thursday, Being Sol Campbell, through which Alex Criminal will get an inside look into his life and follows his pursuit to get again into soccer administration, the 46-year-old revealed he stands by his claims.
“I positively would have captained England much more,” Campbell mentioned.
“Whenever you develop into among the best defenders on the earth, captained your aspect, and also you go from being captain to vice captain to no captain and also you’ve develop into among the best defenders on the earth.
“For me, I’d have positively captained greater than thrice.”
Was it a acutely aware resolution from the highest or unconscious bias? “Who is aware of,” he replied.
“All I do know, with what I did as a footballer, I used to be among the best on the earth, not simply in England, for at the very least two or three years.
“I went from being probably full-time captain to vice-captain to no captain and no person defined it.
“Why ought to or not it’s all the way down to me to search for solutions? It’s all the way down to the powers that be to say ‘I believe he must be’ or the supervisor on the time.
When requested if he had extra attributes to be captain than Michael Owen, he replied: “Much more. All of them. Absolutely I ought to have been a contender.
“It was a such a distinct sort of surroundings. Individuals have been taking a look at various things, they weren’t taking a look at characters, they have been taking a look at sponsors and this and that. It shouldn’t be like that.”