It's Clichy Week on Arsenal.com as we celebrate the player who claimed second spot in our official Player of the Season poll.
The French defender went from strength to strength last season after putting his injury problems behind him. He proved himself to be one of the finest all-round full-backs in Europe and was unfortunate to miss out on a place in France's Euro 2008 squad.
Here, four former Gunners give their assessment of Arsenal's left back - Arsenal TV analyst Stewart Robson and Arsenal TV Online co-commentators Kenny Sansom, Terry Neill and Nigel Winterburn.
"I think he's an excellent player and I think he was very unlucky to miss out on Euro 2008 with France. I think he's as good a defensive left back as I've seen in terms of one-on-one situations. If you're a coach you tell defenders to get out there as the ball travels, slow down as the ball arrives at the winger's feet, then jockey and try and show the attacker one way. Gael throws that out of the window and gets there as quick as he can, runs out at 100 miles an hour, keeps on going and usually wins the ball off the winger. Wingers are so worried by his pace and the amount of pressure Gael puts on them, they can't get their head up to know what's going on, so they get their head down, they have to concentrate on the ball, and they end up going backwards at times. Clichy has improved his attacking play too. He needs to score one or two goals but his crossing is much better and his link-up play is excellent."
"Gael has shown the ultimate consistency. He loves getting forward with the ball and what has been impressive for me is that the defensive side of the game has really come on in the last year. Again he is still very young and will keep on improving. I think Gael is a different type of full-back to what I was when I played. I was defensive and then got forward in support, whereas Gael is more comfortable running with the ball, bursting forward. He likes to get forward whereas I would overlap or support from behind. The most important thing as a full-back is defending and he has improved that incredibly."
"Fantastic. The fact he loves to win, he is aggressive and if things are not working out he gets onto his other team-mates which is important. I think he is pretty special. Of the last eight Arsenal left-backs, Bob McNab, Sammy Nelson and the like; I think Clichy is the only one not have played at international level. That puzzles me, he should be in the France team I think. The one little thing, I think he makes that odd mistake and can get caught. They are only little but he seems to get punished.
"He is so quick, fit, loves bombing forward and loves a challenge. I think one thing that really impressed me was in one of the European games a couple of years ago. In the first five minutes the winger went past him but from that point on, he didn’t get past him. For me, the same thing happened playing for England Schoolboys aged 15 at Wembley against Germany. Their winger has sprinted past me but then never got past me again. My determination made me suss him straight away. That is one of Clichy’s strengths."
"I could not believe the French left him out. He had a marvellous season, he's up there with the best in the world and I don't say that lightly. I suppose in a sense it's good for Arsène Wenger because Gael will get a decent break rather than coming back tired and worn out and not able to take part in a full pre-season. What impresses me about him? His pure ability, his composure on the ball, his control, his passing, his pace. Everything. All-round, and his fellow full-back, the two of them are great athletes with great spirit, and exceptionally talented on the ball."