Did you ever win us a game, Alex?

So Alex Hleb is completing his move to Barcelona today, and one of the two protracted transfers that us Gooners have grown used to in the summer months has come to an end.

I always wanted our mercurial Belarussian to do well for the club, and the trickery in his feet was something for us all to behold.

His abililty to carve out an opening, to try a pass that few others would dare, made him a player of unique vision. Can you imagine ever having to mark him? No, I wouldn't have liked it much either.

Having defended him to the hilt despite the frustration he provoked, I was relieved at the start of the last season when he began to shoot more often, adding firepower to his armoury.

But it was a false dawn. Alex Hleb continued to flatter to decieive and I struggle to recall when he won us a game on his own in the manner of Bobby Pires, Freddie Ljungberg or Marc Overmars.

His suspension at the end of the season underlined the fact that all was not right with him - a mild mannered guy like Hleb isn't the sort to start headbutting people, is he?

Whether it was the fear of failing to win trophies at a club who constantly seem to be in transition, only Hleb knows. Surely moving to Barcelona is going to be anything but calm and sedate, blowing away his suggestions that London was just too hectic for him.

It's not going to take much, when you think about it, for Samir Nasri to take us forward in a way Hleb failed to do so often during is three years at Arsenal - and it says much that when I looked for a clip of him online to include on this article, none featured enough highlights to promt pangs of regret.

So farewell Alex, good luck in Catalonia. You did your best, but I don't think it was ever quite good enough for The Arsenal.