Xhaka gives brutally honest interview
A win at St. James Park would have put Arsenal in the driving seat to finish in the Champions League spot. However, the team looked a shadow of their own self on Monday night. When it mattered the most, the Gunners crumbled.
To finish in the top four, the red half of North London will now have to get a win against Frank Lampard’s Everton, while also praying for Norwich to get the better of Tottenham Hotspur.
No words can describe how poor Mikel Arteta’s men have been in the past two league games, and former captain of the team Granit Xhaka didn’t hold back in his assessment after the game.
“It’s so difficult to find the right words,” the Swiss international told Sky Sports. “We didn’t deserve to be on the pitch today.”
On being asked why his team were so awful against Newcastle, the 29-year-old said, “I can’t explain to you why. We didn’t do what the game plan was, not listening to the coach, doing our own things and when you do that, these games happen.”
He continued, “What happened was a disaster performance and like this, you don’t deserve to play Champions League, you don’t even deserve to play Europa League.”
Something quite ironic about Guimaraes scoring the goal to all but end Arsenal's CL chances. A player who was available in Jan who would have absolutely strengthened the squad for the run-in. Arsenal opted against him and everyone else. It always looked a risk. It didn't pay off.
— Charles Watts (@charles_watts) May 16, 2022
Even though it might sound harsh, everything he said was true. League table doesn’t lie at the end of the campaign. And if you have finished where you have, that’s because it’s the position you deserve to stand at.
Xhaka didn’t stop there in his critical assessment. He further stated, “If someone isn’t ready for this game, stay at home. It doesn’t matter the age, you can be 30, you can be 35, you can be 10, you can be 18. If you’re not ready or you’re nervous, stay on the bench, stay at home, don’t come here. We need people to have balls, sorry to say that, to come here and play.”
Arsenal have gone all Spursy.
— Gary Lineker 💙💛 (@GaryLineker) May 16, 2022
He finished his interview by saying sorry to the Arsenal fans. “I feel very, very sorry for the Arsenal supporters. This is not the way we wanted to go. It’s the only thing I can say, it’s to say sorry. Other things, I don’t have other words.”
A finish in the top four is all but over unless a miracle strikes. After being in such a good position all season, Arsenal have messed it up.
But what has happened has happened. We need to move on at some point of time to continue the progress we have made.
However hard it might seem now, we have to stay together, because the storms were always expected to come.
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