Granit Xhaka (34)


You can’t coach defensive awareness at the age of 26. There has to be some natural instinct involved in being aware in the defensive third


Is it something that he never had or something that needs to be re-coached? (I have never watched a BL game so I dunno).


I lean towards it was something he never had tbh. I suspect at Monchengladbach he was used in a very clearly defined role but when he moved, he struggled defensively under Wenger’s non system and lack of instruction.

Tactical direction should help him but some of his unforced errors were comical. I don’t care how bad Wenger’s systems were towards the end, some basic things like tracking runners and awareness were totally absent.


Surprising move to extend him on a long term deal without seeing him under Emery.


He’s not perfect, but I can’t wait to see him next season, extremely curious.


That’s why we probably sign Torreira…

Ramsey as advanced midfielder incoming :roll_eyes:.



Can see it.


Fucking terrible.

Unai is 4-2-3-1 btw. He only changed at PSG because of the players who wanted that.

It does make our, apparant, lack of interest in a winger also clear.


Xhaka and Torreira at the back with Ozil, Ramsey and Mkhi ahead of them sound the likeliest option to fit Unais system?


If we sign Torreira eventually I think that is what we are going to see. If Xhaka and Ramsey both sign long term extensions that is the most likely set-up. You don’t extend Xhaka for no reason.


Interesting, I’d like to see that. Elneny, Welbeck, Lacazette, AMN, Iwobi on the bench, decent depth. Not amazing but decent.


No point pre judging what Unais set up looks like (or how it performs more to the point). If it’s functional and wins matches idgaf.


I find it a bit underwhelming tbh. Except for Torreira, Maitland-Niles and Iwobi all those guys are in the 26-30 age bracket meaning that is our team for the foreseeable future. I’d be surprised if he can make a contender out of that.


He had 1.5 years of being average to shit. But the last few months of the season he was consistently good. There is no denying that, and tbh I’m one of his biggest critics. He really did look like he turned a corner. Hopefully Emery can push him on further.


Happy he signed a new contract. Was class the last few months of the season. Probably one of our best players


I’m ambivalent about him signing a new contract. He needs to fucking show something before I’m gonna celebrate. Right now as far as I’m concerned he’s average as fuck, at best.


I’m intrigued to see how we are going to line up next season, but struggling to think of the best formation so we use all our key players in the most effective way.

4-3-3 works to some extent with Xhaka, Torreira and Ramsey as a central midfielders with 3 from Özil, Mkhitaryan, Aubameyang and Lacazette forming our attack. This makes us pretty compact, with added width from the full backs when we are going forward, but means that Özil, if playing as part of our attack, would be out wide, where personally I don’t think he is as effective. Also means we have one quality attacking player on the bench plus the likes of Iwobi and Welbeck to call on as subs during a match. 4-3-3 would be best utilised away from home IMO but not at the Emirates.

4-2-3-1 seems a better fit for the players we have, but personally I don’t think Xhaka and Ramsey can play together effectively as the two central midfielders. A Xhaka/Elneny or Ramsey/Torreira combination works better IMO. This then allows Özil to play centrally in the forward three attacking players alongside Aubameyang (on the left wing) and Mkhitaryan (on the right wing) and Lacazette as the central striker. This formation would work best at the Emirates IMO, but does mean we really need to get another quality attacking player to provide strength and depth within the squad.


Totally agree…Xhaka has a lot to prove this season. If he doesn’t perform under Emery he needs to go next summer.


Hopefully we will se the end of a Xhaka - Ramsey partnership. If we are going to play to xhakas strenghts he needs to be partnered with aggresive b2b bulldog with a slightly more defensive mindset. Torreira seems like the perfect fit for xhaka. Hopefully he will now be able to focus on his insane long range passing and crisp ball distribution from deep while torreira do most of the running and dirty work. Really excited for the new season damn !


Wouldn’t be a fan if this tbh. Reminds me of Wenger and his contrast partnerships in CM.

Emery at Seville employed two well rounded CMs as the base of the midfield who didn’t vary from each other majorly in terms of style. His CM pairings have always been defensive minded workers doing the unspectacular but necessary work when it comes to pressing, maintaining possession and winning the ball.

Xhaka doesn’t fit that profile imo. Now I really like Xhaka but his offensive qualities are useless in a Emery system if he lacks mobility, defensive awareness and is terrible in the tackle. You can’t rely on one player to bring the energy and clean up, it has to be the paring together

Emery never utilised a DLP before his hand was forced to accommodate 433 at PSG. I really don’t want to see it here because ozil should the AM and I wouldn’t trust Xhaka deeper.

This is why I feel a Elneny x Torreira would be the best CM partnership we could go for atm.