Charlie Nicholas was the hottest property in British football at the time. Liverpool had the allure of being title-winners, Manchester United still glistened despite fallow years and Arsenal? We were just desperate for a hero, someone to take the place of the departed Brady and the treacherous Stapleton.
It was surprising not just to journalists that Nicholas chose Arsenal. But the beauty parade echoed this summer with Eden Hazard’s prima donna posturing; the Nicholas sideshow went on for weeks after he announced he was leaving Celtic. It would take another two weeks for the contract to be signed. Arsenal have never been the quickest in the transfer market but when you land your prize, is speed of the essence?