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Vermaelen impresses at being dropped by Arsenal

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has praised skipper Thomas Vermaelen for his reaction to being a substitute since the north London derby defeat by Tottenham. Vermaelen has been watching from the bench but he is set to return to the side when the Gunners take on Norwich on Saturday.

"He took it in a remarkable way [when he lost his place]," Wenger said. "He is a great man and I didn't make him captain by coincidence. I knew there is something mentally special there.

"Vermaelen responds in positive situations and in less positive situations like when you don't play.

"They know there could be rotation with the three centre backs from the start of the season, depending on good and less good periods of any individual player. He [Vermaelen] took that remarkably well."

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Dave Williams

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