Granit Xhaka behaviour was atrocious claims Arsenal legend

Charlie Nicholas believes Granit Xhaka’s career at the Emirates is finished.

The fallout from Granit Xhaka’s reaction towards the club’s fans is what was expected. It seems there is no way back for the former Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder at the moment.

Xhaka has struggled to win over the fans for most of his career at the Emirates. It certainly got no easier when he was made the team’s captain.

Xhaka has hardly inspired confidence since being given the captains responsibility and Sunday’s episode is the last straw according to Nicholas.

Nicholas admits the club has had an issue with leadership for about five years now.

He, however, believes Xhaka shouldn’t be let back into the team and says he would be surprised if the midfielder pulled on an Arsenal jersey again.


“He’s representing Arsenal as a captain and it is unacceptable to think you’re as big as anything at the club. His behaviour was atrocious, and I don’t see him having a future at the club,” Nicholas said.

“I think the bosses at Arsenal, and not just Unai Emery, are probably looking at this and thinking what is Arsenal meant to be? It’s got a great history. It’s got some fabulous players but if it doesn’t have the crowd it doesn’t have a soul, it doesn’t have a heartbeat.

“The crowd will always be the element of the football club. They are bigger and better than anyone else who’s involved in it, so he’ll have to take his medicine. I’ll be surprised if he comes back in any capacity to play for Arsenal again.”

Emery is set to meet with Xhaka this week and the fans expect the subject of leadership wILL be discussed. Many of them hope he is stripped of the captaincy before he steps onto the field to represent them again.


  1. I feel for Xhaka as most of you probably already know from other postings here. But, what he did was wrong and Charlie is spot on! What the fans did was a direct reaction to the fact that, A:) He did not perform well enough (again), and B:) Was in no rush to come off even though the clock was running down and we needed another goal fast. That makes for a bad reaction from the fans (who already unsettled and aggravated) who have seen this all before so many times from him!

    The club have appointed a manager who, as we all know now, is not able to “make it happen”. Even though, he has spent a large amount of money. Our identity changed so much over the last 10 years and so has our football. Xhaka is wrong for the brand of football we want and our strikers are starving for service. Our defenders are starving for support. Xhaka is in the middle unfortunately and Emery has put him there and club where it is today. Where it was two years ago!! 🙁

      1. I hear you Pat!! I actually wouldn’t mind if we played very well. Trouble is, we don’t!

        It’s like being stuck on a broken ride that makes you feel ill on every revolution 🙁

  2. The more anti-Xhaka articles I read the more I am starting to feel like defending the guy despite having heavily criticized him for his actions. I don’t rate the player and can not justify his actions but, come on, this is getting ridiculous. No?

    Let’s give it a rest.

  3. Whatever be the decision of the Club and the concerned authorities, one must always understand that the Club is bigger than any individual, be it the player or the coach. The Club, the values it stands for, the brand it has of being a feared and respected club all over the world. We have a proud history and should not be the laughing stock of other clubs. Lets sort out this matter one way or ther and get on with business because we have a packed schedule coming up and we need to focus on more important matters.

  4. All these past legends, ex players and pundits all but a few seem to have the same reaction that Xhaka was grossly out of order and the fact that no apology has been forthcoming is not making the situation for him any easier,I wonder if he might use this as a way of getting a move,the fans and media will not leave this alone now as Xhaka is not a popular figure anyway. Emery has to take some of the blame he should not have kept picking him knowing the pressure he was under due to his lack of form of which I have seen very little of in the whole of his Arsenal career,and then to ask the team to pick a captain and go along with it is making me wonder who is the leader here,the players or the coach,You have to show them who is the boss, it’s weak to give them that sort of control,so there you have the reason why we have no leaders on the pitch,we dont even have one off it.

    1. Exactly right in every word! The main fault is Emerys for picking him and not leaving him out. Emery has clearly regressed the team, even from the poor team Wenger left behind, even with some talent being bought. NO EXCUSES AND HE SHOULD BE SACKED.

  5. I’d be surprised as well if Arsenal don’t end Xhaka’s career in January. No matter what the crazy fans said on social media, what he did at the Emirates was an insult to Arsenal

    I believe Emery was forced to use Xhaka, simply because most Gunners selected him as their captain. Before his negativity spreads further, he has to be separated from the team and replaced with another midfielder

    1. @ gotanidea
      On point.
      Exactly my opinion. If you can’t handle fans pressure you can’t captain Arsenal; team mates support or not.
      M Ozil has received several bashing from fans but he never insulted them. It’s the same fans now calling for his return. Xaka shouldn’t go but should be stripped of his captaincy and benched in games for a while till the situation at the Emirate wane. Then, he can impress the supporters with an improved performance on the pitch.
      Though I wonder why he is yet to apologise to the fans. Refusal will do him no good. This tension at the Arsenal is also an indication that UEmery should improve and start getting results else he might be the next to be…

  6. I just read Emery has taken the decision to the senior players again, asking the senior players if they want the captaincy be stripped off Xhaka or if they will stand by him😂😂😂

    This was how the first process started before it ended up true.
    My God! If this stuff is really true, then we e don’t really have a coard as manager, we’ll be having this biggest coward on earth as manager

    1. If this is true then you are spot on Eddie. I have lost all faith in Emery to improve our team. I want him sacked .

    2. How dumb can you be?? Even if you think the fans are wrong, do you really want to go head-to-head with them by leaving him in as captain? Do you expect his teammates to vote against him? Why put these types of decisions in their hands? It will only divide the squad.

      Emery should actually take charge of the situation, strip Xhaka of the captaincy and if he still wants to play Xhaka, he should tell Xhaka to make a public apology and suspend him for a few games as punishment. This way the fans would have to accept that the situation had been dealt with and peace would be restored (for now).

      Leave Xhaka in as captain and you basically beg for a toxic atmosphere. Not to speak about the situation where half the team votes for him and the other half against him.

      1. Truth, I have long noted how much clear minded thought precedes your regular posts. What you outline above would clearly be true were Emery to let player power continue to do what is HIS job alone and it is what he is paid for; ie to make decisions and above all CORRECT decisions. Any sober minded analysis of his time as our manager so far , must surely conclude that he is failing and mostly failing in communication of his methods to the squad and also in failing to speak the language intelligibly, which provides a huge hurdle to him, to the players he is trying to properly coach and to we fans also. He has no obvious fan or player affection bank credit, as the later Wenger so clearly still retained to the day he left.
        To turn the undoubted majority fan antipathy around now is a huge and I suggest an impossible task for him to achieve. I hope, though doubt, the regime have the wisdom to say “thanks Unai but no thanks” and let him move on very soon now.

  7. The manager is paid to make the decisions and the players are supposed to listen. Its not the other way round. If Emery really wants the players to decide who the captain will be then he has no backbone and should follow Xhaka out the door.

  8. Am just sipping tea and waiting to see how the management will handle this. Obviously we can’t keep having players and fans publicly trading insults as this will ruin the club reputation and general environment. However, if the players rally behind Xhaka the management might have to shelve any disciplinary actions planned for Xhaka.

  9. Firstly, let me say that, in principle, it is not a bad idea for the players to choose their captain. This is not necessarily a sign of weakness on the part of the manager. Who of us really know how captains of the football teaams in English football or anywhere else for that matter, are appointed? It’s quite probably different for every manager.

    Emery’s decision to consult with his players regarding the mess created by the guy THEY chose as captain is also not a bad thing or a sign of weakness. If you like the hairdryer treatment and everyone else, get Fergie or the Special One. Everyone has his own way of dealing with dressing room problems, but at the end the manager needs to have the dressing room behind him or his cause is lost.

    Time will tell whether his methods are getting results, and we psychologists or psychiatrists should not tell him how to do this.

    Finally, the whole episode will result in Xhaka not playing in an Arsenal shirt for a while. Is that not what we have been shouting for?

  10. You can’t tell paying customers to “f-off” plain and simple. The customers pay the bills, the lifeblood of the club, bigger than any player or manager.

    I don’t condone how the fans behaved towards Xhaka, and it’s disgusting dragging his family into it, they have never worn our badge or stepped on the pitch.

    As far as Xhaka goes, he gets paid very very well to do a job, and he knows his poor performances draw boos from the crowd. Xhaka is the most thin-skinned sensitive nancy-boy player I have seen for us. Giroud got called a donkey, lamppost, booed on a regular basis every time he missed a shot on goal. That went on for years! Yet Giroud played better and answered with his play, not two fingers and telling fans to f-off.

    Let’s see if a player gets benched and how long, for that behavior towards the crowd.
    We know about Ozil and Mustafi, lets see if Emery is the hypocrite I suspect, or is he a real coach and shows some consistency in his man management.

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