Mikel Arteta uses Granit Xhaka as an example for out-of-favour Arsenal stars

Granit Xhaka has had an impressive career turnaround in recent months, and Mikel Arteta thinks that his revival can serve as a lesson for Mesut Ozil and Matteo Guendouzi.

Xhaka had been on the verge of leaving the Emirates in the last transfer window after he fell out with the club’s fans.

The Swiss midfielder was stripped of the club’s captaincy and it appeared that there would be no way back for him. However, when Arteta became the club’s manager, he convinced him to remain with the Gunners and that he was an important part of his first-team plans.

Xhaka has now turned his Arsenal career around by showing good leadership on the field and putting in some of the finest performances among all the Arsenal players this season.

Ozil and Guendouzi have struggled to feature since the restart and Arteta has told them that they can find their way back into the picture, just like Xhaka did.

“The challenge with Granit was to convince him that there was still a place for him here – that I had big belief in him and that things can turn around pretty quickly in this industry,” Arteta told reporters via Goal.com ahead of Tuesday’s Premier League clash with Aston Villa.

“He had to send the right messages. First of all, he had to believe that he could do it and if that was the case, we were going to support him all the way through.

“I’m really glad to hear and sense the reaction from the fans towards him, I think they can appreciate what he’s done. That’s in the past, there’s a lot of positives to take from difficult situations and we all learn from that.

“He’s a really good example for any player that is in a difficult moment that if you are willing, consistent and really want to do it generally, I think there’s always a way back.”

Asked whether Xhaka could be considered an example for those two in particular, Arteta replied: “That applies for any player, and any member of the staff.

“If you really show that then you’re deciding to do the best, not for yourself, but for the team and for the club, I think everybody will welcome you.

“It’s not just me that has to give the green light. It’s everybody that has to be supportive and you need to feel as well that support from everybody because if not it’s a very uncomfortable situation.”

Tags Granit Xhaka Matteo Guendouzi Mesut Ozil Mikel Arteta


  1. Xhaka is mot a good player. The only difference is that he no longer pull the jerseys of opponents. The main reason that we are No.10 on the log is the contribution of midfielders , with Xhaka included. Arsenal midfielders cannot protect the defence, and they cannot make quick counter attack. We need energetic players like Gouendouzi and Martinelli

    1. You are one of the few that would still blame him and not blame the ones you like I guess . How many games would we have won if Auba had just scored the chances presented to him? Spurs comes to mind real quick . We ain’t 10th because of that ? Is Auba not a good player then? We had Guendouzi on against brighton. The only energy I saw from him was grabbing Maupay by the throat. I’m quite sure , if he had used that energy earlier in the game , to do something useful , we’d have won the game . Maybe I’d suggest you start watching football and stop getting your opinions form pundits and bloggers.

  2. I’m glad he’s turned it around. At one point, I never thought we’d see him in an Arsenal shirt again…
    He’s knuckled down and worked hard under MA…. we’ve seen some excellent displays from him recently…. so give credit where it is due.

    OT.. Did anyone watch Brighton v Newcastle and hear Matt Ritchie -“How have you given that, you wee dick” to the linesman….. I bet the commentators will be apologising to the viewers more than ever in these last couple of games!! 😄

  3. Xhaka like Laca,is a good player, not great. Good for the bench. If we have to target the title, sorry IMO these are not the players to count on. We need better. To play consistently for 30+ EPL games requires the players to be mentally and physically fit. Good Granit has overcome his temper tantrums, needs to improve his fitness which is a big asking.We did win two important games and played well against the Tots, but we did lose a critical home game to Oly. Hence consistency is the key for a serious challenge. We would need Partey as the first choice and a B2B / deeper play maker to complement him like Cabellos. Plus we need a serious CAM (please do not give me all that talk about Ozil and how great he was,…….). Mkhi is going very well in Rome (20 games, 9 goals, 4 assists) Mesut Ozil (18 games, 1 goal, 2 assist) Granit Xhaka playing as DM -29 games, 1 goal, 2 assists.So from the midfield we know who is the worst player as on date.

    1. No updates today LC regarding Ozils Appearances and goals overall ,feel like we need reminding again 👍

  4. With regards to Ozil and Guendouzi…. Ozil is in the recent training pictures, but still no sign of MG…..

  5. Xhaka will never dictate games. Sometimes the game needs to slow down or pick up the pace of the game. Since the departure of Fabregas, we’ve lacking that individual brilliance of reading the game in the midfield. Those who say Xhaka has improved, can you mention only 1 game that Xhaka dictated, since his arrival at Emirates

    1. Man City. Our first goal arrived from his direct action. He takes the ball from Debruyne, and imnitiates the counter play. When City have everyone pressed, he presents himself and loosens the pressure on Martinez, and actually plays the pass to Luiz that releases him to go forward. Xhaka and Fabregas also play different roles and thus have different requirements.

  6. I cannot possibly go along with this hasty mind changing about Xhaka from a number of Gooners. I do agree he has played better of late and had a terrific game against City. But I always look at the overall picture when making judgements and when set against over three years of rash, immobile and one paced perfs, it doesn’t impress me nor change my mind.

    I see better all round team tactics, a tighter formation and better team work ethic as the main cause for this overhyped improvement in Xhaka. I still want him sold.

    Sorry but I have never been one for jumping on the latest flavour of the month bandwagon. Just sober analysis over the long term and a decision made using the full picture for me. Same applies to Mustafi and Luiz for me!

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