Granit Xhaka has proven Martin Keown wrong with Arsenal U-turn
Arsenal signed Granit Xhaka for £30million (BBC) back in 2016 from Borussia Monchengladbach and he’s been far from a fan favourite during his time in North London.
He is a defensive midfielder in the Gunners team that is meant to break up play and keep the team ticking over, but often he’s been rash in his approach and been capable of madness.
The 27-year-old often looks a different player on the international stage when he captains Switzerland and he shows his class in the centre of the park.
Arsenal legend Martin Keown admitted his frustration with Xhaka earlier in the season and suggested his time with the club may be coming to an end.
“What we witnessed against Tottenham [in September] was classic Xhaka. His constant fouling interrupted Arsenal’s flow. The hosts lost momentum because he kept breaking up play. This is what Xhaka does. He does more damage than good when it comes to tackling. Xhaka may be on borrowed time in this team,” Keown told the Daily Mail in September 2019.
Xhaka has fortunately been reborn since Mikel Arteta took charge as manager in December from Unai Emery and he’s looked a much better player since as a result.
The Swiss midfielder has been at the heart of the team’s improved results on the pitch and has put together some of his most consistent form in an Arsenal shirt since he joined the club.
It certainly looks like he’s performed a U-turn now and that the penny may have finally dropped for him on how to be a real hit in the Premier League.
He’s worked his socks off defensively and looked more disciplined in his role, as well as being involved in build-up play and he’s always been capable of spectacular long passes.
Xhaka can’t take his new form for granted though and he needs to keep impressing in the Arsenal side to show he can have a long-term role under Arteta.