Arsenal bid farewell to Justin Hoyte - another young Gun who just didn't make the grade

Justin is out.

When Justin Hoyte joined Sunderland on loan a few years ago, it was expected that he would return and push Emmanuel Eboue for the right back spot in the Arsenal side.

After all, C*shley Cole had shown he could displace a Brazilian international, Sylvinho, so it could be done, couldn't it?!

The answer, sadly, was no. Justin Hoyte was never good enough for Arsenal, even though his dedication was never in doubt.

Arsene Wenger bought Bacary Sagna, indicating his lack of faith in Hoyte, and the young defender looked way out of his depth whenever the stakes were high. His performance at Sh*te H*rt L*ne last season was one of spectacular incompetence, even given the dire form of others on show that night.

Even when he was slotted in to the centre, Hoyte’s positional sense left much to be desired, with his younger brother Gavin seeming to have more idea of how to defend.

The fact that Aston Villa were linked with Hoyte during the summer before today’s transfer to Middlesbrough suggests that his agent was asked to help find him another club. Middlesbrough is about his level.

Despite all my reservations about Eboue, I’d rather have the Ivorian playing as Sagna’s understudy. That says it all really. Justin Hoyte tried hard – and we wish him good luck.