Arsenal captain Granit Xhaka had another performance to forget today as Arsenal laboured to a 3-2 victory over Aston Villa at the Emirates.
Xhaka was subbed in the 72nd minute with some sections of the crowd booing him and judging by quite a few comments on this site it appears to be a universal opinion that he is not good enough for Arsenal, however, one man disagrees and that is Unai Emery.
Speaking after the game today the Spaniard had this to say about his captain and the crowd’s reaction.
“My opinion is we need our supporters and we need our supporters helping each player,”
“Today I changed him because he played 90 minutes on Thursday. I preferred a fresh player. But for me he is a very important player for us.
“He has a big commitment here. I am sure he is going to achieve the best things. We are professional. He is an experienced player.
“He knows sometimes we are criticised. We need to be mature and continue working. I am going to support him. He’s a good player.”
As I said, Emery does not share the opinion of a lot of Arsenal fans when it comes to the 26-year-old Swiss international, in fact, what I get from those comments is that Emery has no intention of discarding Xhaka and that he remains a firm part of his plans going forward.
I could be wrong on this but I am of the opinion that for Emery this is now a matter of principle, he will either make it work at Arsenal with Xhaka or go down in flames, I just do not get the feeling that he will be backing down in his support of his captain.
I think that whatever happens we, the fans, are going to have to accept that Xhaka is a permanent fixture until Emery is no longer at the Emirates,