The international break always seems to bring us quotes from players and bosses in their home press that can cause controversy or fill space on websites.
Hardly controversial Arsenal’s Swiss international midfielder Granit Xhaka has stated that he needs to rein his aggression in slightly, while his club boss Arsene Wenger has stated Xhaka will never curb his aggression.
Xhaka has always been combative
The strange thing is Arsene Wenger must have known what he was getting last summer when he paid £34million to Borussia Monchengladbach for the combative central midfielder.
Even a casual observer of Xhaka will have known that he had a reputation for being slightly rash in the tackle in the Bundesliga. He was never going to arrive in England suddenly just stop rushing into challenges.
However, the reason Xhaka was signed was to add some steel to the Gunners central midfield. To be fair to the Swiss star that has yielded mixed results in his relatively short time at the club. The Swiss star has been booked nine times and dismissed twice in his career in England so far.
The 24-year-old felt the need to come out in his own defence by telling Swiss newspaper 24 Heures: “What has really affected me is the source of the criticism and the form of it,”
“They were not from my club, but from former players who do not know me, nor did they know Arsenal.
“People who know nothing about how I operate have attacked me and made by look like a foolish idiot.”
Has the attributes to be the complete midfielder
Xhaka has all the attributes to be the complete central midfielder. He is not your typical midfield destroyer, despite the number of times he was been booked by English referees this season. He is a highly talented player, can create and has good vision.
If he could just somehow become slightly less rash then he could become the perfect central midfielder. Wenger would not have spent £34million on the Swiss star if he did not believe that Xhaka would develop and improve on the weak points of his game.
Arsenal need to depend on Xhaka
Arsenal face a crucial couple of months until the end of the season. The Gunners are now regarded as outsiders to finish in the Premier League top four at odds of 3/1. Arsenal are also in the semi-finals of the FA Cup, so the north London club needs Xhaka to be at his best and to curb his enthusiasm.
Granit Xhaka is a good footballer, but at times his aggression gets the better of him. If he can develop that side of his game then he can become a very good footballer for Arsenal.
Will Granit Xhaka eventually be a success at Arsenal?