Granit Xhaka was a hot topic this summer with Roma believed to be courting his potential signature, before he opted to extend his stay in north London by signing a new contract with Arsenal.
Jose Mourinho was believed to be at the forefront of the move to bring him to Serie A, with many believing the deal was a matter of when, not if, but the deal eventually broke down. Admin Pat here at JustArsenal never believed that Xhaka was ever departing the club despite the strength behind the rumours however (as he keeps reminding me).
It remains to be seen what happened with the transfer, while some clearly feel the saga was somewhat of a joke, with the Giallorossi later splashing a sizeable fee to land Tammy Abraham from Chelsea, proving that our deal hadn’t faltered because of their financial situation.
Xhaka has been seemingly been lobbying for a possible return to Borussia Monchengladbach also, and club chief Max Eberl has now claimed that he has hinted on more than one occasion about coming back.
“Granit had a great time here,” Eberl told Bild.
“The fact that he has a very close relationship with the club and the region makes us very happy. We still have irregular contact.
“He has hinted at this more than once. Granit told me his salary, and I told him to play a few more years at Arsenal and then we can talk more.
“It’s a nice story and always nice when players express themselves like that. When he’s really 32 years old, I’ll talk to him again…”
It certainly sounds as though the player himself is eager to leave the club, despite signing a new deal to extend his stay with us. I don’t believe the fans would try and stand in his way if he was to be clear in that want, and as our team has showed in recent weeks, we can clearly survive without him.
Is it normal for players to talk to their former employers? Would these conversations not be considered ‘tapping up’?