What’s in a number Xhaka?

Gunner Granit changes squad numbers!

It was only last week that Arsenal secured their first new signing of the summer, with the Gunners getting Granit Xhaka to sign on the dotted line.

The former Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder signed for the Gunners officially last week in a rumoured £30 million deal, on a long term contract. The Swiss international star was very keen on securing his former Monchengladbach number, 34, which has always been of high significance for the new Arsenal star. However as the number 34 is current occupied by Francis Coquelin, Xhaka seemed to be settled on taking the number 16, formally worn by Aaron Ramsey.

In a turnaround for Xhaka however, the midfielder has since be allocated at different number in the form of number 29. Arsenal fans understandably reacted with confusion as for the change, with Arsenal.com simply stating that the number is of more significance for Xhaka, as it is a reverse of his birth year 19’92’.

Xhaka follows Alexis, Iwobi and Ramsey in getting new numbers for the upcoming season, but personally I don’t understand Xhaka’s reason for change at all. We understand the importance of significance for Xhaka, who desperately wanted Coquelin’s 34, as he has a ’34’ tattooed on his back. But If he wanted a number of more significance than 16, why didn’t he opt for number 29 straight away, or even more so why not go for number 92, his actual birth year, rather than the reverse number of 29?

At the end of the day this is nothing for Arsenal fans to get in a twist over, as it is simply nothing more than a squad number change. However it is quite baffling to why the club or Xhaka would make such a decision in the first place.

The best news is that if you’ve already purchased an ‘Xhaka 16’ shirt from Arsenal Direct, the club will print a new ‘Xhaka 29’ shirt for you.

Tags Coquelin Xhaka


  1. The article is correct that a shirt # is not a big deal in the end.

    So with that line of thinking it should also not be a big deal to us fans when a player opts for a new number. Whatever.

  2. Trust me, a number can really be big deal per psychology, it allows some play with total conviction, it creates a persona that a player wants to live up to. At other times it brings about positional awareness like the number 21 has been claimed to be most suitable to very versatile players because its a multiple of many positions on the pitch. For some players like Zizou, it never mattered to them but for others, its a big deal, it just depends on the player.

  3. What is it with number 34 and Arsenal?

    Coquelin is 34.
    Xhaka wore 34.
    Rodriguez wears the number 34 and we been linked to him.

    Are there any decent Cf who wears the number 34?

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