This amazing Arsenal side didn’t cost much, but is full of world class players

first_imgGOALKEEPERDavid Seaman’s £1.3million transfer from Queens Park Rangers was a British transfer record for a goalkeeper in 1990, which was two years before the Premier League began. Lehmann, however, arrived in 2003 for similar money from Borussia Dortmund and was an ‘Invincible’ in his first season at the club. Other highlights include saving a Juan Roman Riquelme penalty in the 2006 Champions League semi-final, but Arsenal may never have seen their eccentric German play between the sticks had he joined Liverpool from Milan in 1999. In the end he decided to go to Dortmund and Gooners everywhere are glad for it. Will Bernd Leno, the £19.2m buy from Bayer Leverkusen, replace him on this list one day?DEFENCEAt £7m, Lauren is the most expensive defender in this line-up. He won five major trophies in seven seasons with Arsenal following his move from Mallorca in 2000. Sol Campbell, one of the best centre-backs of his era, was a free transfer from Spurs, much to the anger of their north London rivals. Not much got past him or Kolo Toure, who arrived from Ivory Coast side ASEC Mimosas in 2002. Clichy proved to be a more than adequate replacement for Ashley Cole despite barely playing for Cannes before joining the Gunners in 2003.MIDFIELDGilberto Silva, a £4.5m purchase from Atletico Mineiro, was the wall in Arsenal’s midfield, while Freddie Ljungberg and Robert Pires provided the pace and trickery on the flanks, with Patrick Vieira’s steel in the centre of the park providing a good balance. Vieira was unknown when he arrived from Milan in 1996, but became one of the best players in Europe. Pires was being tracked by Real Madrid in 2000, but Arsenal were the team he left Marseille for, while Ljungberg endeared himself to the Highbury faithful by scoring on his debut against Man United after joining from Swedish club Halmstad in 1998.ATTACKIt may have seemed a lot to some at the time, but the £11m Arsenal paid Juventus for Thierry Henry proved to be a steal. By the time he left for Barcelona in a £16m transfer in 2007, he was their top scoring player and a big reason for their utter dominance of English football in the early part of the last decade. Anelka, meanwhile, cost less than £1m in 1997 and went from gangly striker to the most coveted in European football. Before joining, the 19-year-old had scored just once for Paris Saint-Germain and then formed part of Arsenal’s double winners in 1998. He joined Real Madrid in 1999 for £23m. An honourable mention goes to Robin van Persie, the £2.75m buy from Feyenoord. 1 Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was known for his frugal ways during his 22 years in charge. If he could avoid spending huge sums of money on players then he would.And it often worked out, as you can see by this quality team full of players who turned out to be bargains.center_img talkSPORT.com put together an XI, but excluded academy graduates and kept it in the Premier League era last_img

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