Granit Xhaka (34)


This isn’t a new problem. Essentially Xhaka isn’t good enough to play around it in the same way that Cazorla and Arteta have done in the past.

Edit: But these two were the most experienced they’d ever been and were supreme technicians as well so hard for a fairly young guy to come in and manage.


He still played a rather casual and unnecessary pass on the first goal. It’s true though that it doesn’t help that we struggle with our build up from the back.


And they struggled with that also.


ya that pic is bullcrap. What Gunnerpr said is more accurate, we have one of the (tog. with maybe Barca) most midfield-oriented style of football out there, and if you go from a 3-man midfield where everyone can do a bit of everything and you have some pogba/vieira type in all positions, to a 2-man midfield instead you need different players.

You need a specialist in controlling the pace of the game + killer forward passing, and the technical agility to get that done when their opponent congests mid/presses like hell centrally and you have less time to think and act. Then you need a much more specialised defensive midfielder whose job is to relieve the others, kill space, give ball to pass-guy and work hard in doing so.

A combo of Cazorla (first season in midfield) and Coquelin (breakthrough season) could hold a 2-man midfield ok… but Xhaka is too slow and inaccurate, Elneny offers little forward and has lapses in concentration defensively, Coquelin has lost his mojo, Ramsey is a b2b jack-of-all-trades who is the opposite of a specialist, Cazorla is injured and the rest are too young to get it done consistently I feel.

For the first time maybe ever with Wenger do we have a pretty shitty midfield group for the task, partly due to us shifting the role of the midfield from a 3-man thing for which we had an ok group. We took a chance on Xhaka and he might be the first bigger signing that didn’t pay off - this ofc. happens to every other top club out there occasionally but we can’t afford it nearly as much since we’re run under stricter conditions.

I guess we would desperately need to take a chance on someone like Seri or similar (anyone out there available who can run a faster paced midfield) but I don’t know if that is actually realistic or not. An alternative is to get one of many “around 30yo Spanish midfielders who have maybe peaked but still have 2 years in them” (excuse the generalisation) who can always pick a nifty pass and play think fast. A bit like we did with Cazorla or maybe even Arteta to some degree. Maybe we could get one for cheap.


I do agree. The pic merely picks out a moment that speaks to a wider issue.


Arteta :joy:


He’s just not intelligent enough for the top level, which was obvious enough last season. You can build the team around him, do the best you can to hide his flaws, but he’ll still not really be anything special.

I would say sell, if there weren’t already god knows how many players that need to move before he does.

Either way, an upgrade to play instead of him would be nice.


Never liked him even in his Gladback days but it as an irrational dislike regardless of always finding him a bit dumb as a player.
Never liked him as an Arsenal player, didn’t know he was this stupid.
His glory passes make him look good otherwise he is just horrendous.


Wengerball in a nice graphic. That’s how it’s supposed to look.


Player of the year! :switzerland:


Who does their player of the year awards in August. Apart from Switzerland obviously.


How can he be Swiss POTY for 2017 if we are only two thirds of the way through 2017?


Who was he up against?
Senderos and Djourou?


His slowness at releasing the ball coupled with his lack of composure when pressed makes him pretty much a diabolical fit in our team when put next to anybody in our squad apart from Cazorla (who makes everybody look good in any event).

His ball retention/recycling ability is not good enough. Press him and he crumbles which is exacerbated by the lack of passing options when he does have the ball.


Guess it is not that difficult to win it :xhaka:


I don’t doubt he possesses talent but I’m starting to think this guy is going to be a total bust for us.

As others have said, the 2016 summer window is looking like a complete and utter failure.


Players of this quality would never have chosen Arsenal if Wenger wasn’t the manager!!!


Pretty sure that you can change the year in your statement to the current one or the previous few and still sadly be on the mark.

More infuriating than Wenger’s lineup choices is his steadfast refusal to adapt to how the transfer market has changed with the explosion of TV money for the EPL clubs. He’s no longer good enough to “out manage” the other guy on the sideline and now he has seemingly lost his ability to bring in talent to help offset that.

Xhaka seems to be a player that doesn’t have a lot of composure and is being put into tough positions when he does have the ball–not a good combo.


Haha yeah.

The 2016 window was at least a novelty because we went out and spent a decent amount for once and it’s still a fucking sham :laughing:


Still hoping whoever comes in next has some tactical capacity to use Xhaka effectively. It took Wenger half a year to figure out he isn’t flexible enough to be a b2b CM. He needs to be this team’s astrolabe and I feel it’s achievable with the correct set up enforced.

It did seem an odd fit at the time of purchasing and I’m really interested if this was 100% a Wenger signing? Arsene’s indecision and hands off approach to start with and consistently exposing Granit’s weaknesses probably answers my own question!