Although now residing with City, Vieira will be more famously known for his time at Arsenal where he came into prominence from 1996 to 2005, making 406 appearances for the gunners winning three premier league titles and four FA cups (including the infamous Invincibles win in the 2004/05 season and two cup Doubles in the 1997/98 and 2001/02 seasons). He went on to eventually lead the side as captain in 2002 before leaving for Juventus in 2005.
Vieira’s strength and distribution made him a force to be reckoned with, where he made an immense partnership with another Arsenal figure Emmanuel petit. His steely attitude often landed him in hot water though, being sent off ten times in his Arsenal career. The no nonsense midfielder was instrumental to Arsenal’s success in his nine seasons and as such became ranked the fifth-best player ever at Arsenal in a fan poll in 2008.
Before he called curtains on his Arsenal career he went out with a roar, playing his last game against Manchester United in the 2005 FA cup final where he scored the winning penalty in a penalty shoot-out after a 0-0 draw, making for the grandest of exits.
Now moving to the present he still looks to further his football career, but rather doing so off the pitch saying: “This role is a fantastic new challenge for me and I am very grateful to Manchester City for offering me this opportunity.
“I have a lot to learn about the non-playing areas of the business but there are many very experienced people here for me to learn from and I am confident that I can make a significant contribution to the club’s ongoing success.”
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While it is good to see him pursue a mentoring role, it is a shame he hasn’t done this at Arsenal where all his major success started. While regrettable, Vieira was still one of the great Arsenal players and one of the best players to grace the premier league. He will always be regarded as an Arsenal legend.