Enough is enough: Arsenal must offload £90,000-a-week liability when the chance arrives

Why Arsenal should offload out-of-favour Xhaka when the chance arrives

According to Sky Germany (h/t Sky Sports), Hertha Berlin are targeting out of favour Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka in January.

Jurgen Klinsmann, manager at Berlin, is on the lookout for a holding midfielder and they are targeting Xhaka, whose future at the Arsenal remains an uncertainty after his bust-up with their fans, the report added.

The German club are hoping that they could make the best out of the situation by striking a deal with the Gunners for the Swiss international.

Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka (middle) in action against Chelsea.
Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka (middle) in action against Chelsea. (Getty Images)

Meanwhile, Xhaka is passing through one of the worst phases of his career after he was stripped off Arsenal captaincy by Unai Emery for taking a jibe at the fans in a match against Crystal Palace last November.

Since then, the 27-year-old has seen himself fall down the pecking order at the Emirates, spending most of his time warming the benches.

Berlin, meanwhile, are currently 13th in the Bundesliga table and are hopeful that the defensive midfielder will prefer a move to the Olympiastadion after the course of the recent events.

Moreover, with Arsenal appointing Mikel Arteta as their head coach after their ongoing struggles in the league, it remains to be seen if Xhaka is a part of his plans or not.

Arsenal holding midfielder Granit Xhaka.
Arsenal holding midfielder Granit Xhaka. (Getty Images)

It has been a disappointing season so far for the deep-lying playmaker, who used to be a regular in the Arsenal side ever since he made that switch from Borussia Monchengladbach in the summer of 2016.

He has made a total of 14 appearances this season from all competitions and has managed only a single assist – a poor display compared to his last year’s return of 4 goals and 5 assists.

A veteran of 148 games, Xhaka’s performance has deteriorated over the years. The 2017 Arsenal footballer of the year and FA Cup winner (same year) has since then not won any major laurels for his club, which lay further claim to his dip in form.

Also, with young guns such as Matteo Guendouzi and Lucas Torreira rising up through the ranks, Xhaka has found the going tough at the Emirates.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta during his stint as assistant manager of Manchester City.
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta during his stint as assistant manager of Manchester City. (Getty Images)

With the two youngsters now vying for a starting place in the side, the £90,000-a-week Xhaka has found his place in the first-team sheet increasingly threatened.

A regular in his first two seasons at the club, Xhaka was preferred second to Torreira last season, with the former making just 29 league appearances compared to the latter’s 34.

Meanwhile, it has been a breakthrough season for the young Guendouzi, who has featured in 16 of their 17 league matches, signifying his importance within the current squad.

Read more:

Arsenal's young midfielder Matteo Guendouzi in action.
Arsenal’s young midfielder Matteo Guendouzi in action. (Getty Images)

Verdict

With Xhaka not performing to the best of his abilities in recent times, and his altercation with the fans costing him his place at the club, it would be wise of Arsenal to let go of the 2-time Swiss league champion.

Moreover, Guendouzi and Torreira’s meteoric rise within the ranks has led to the Swiss star fighting for a place in the side. Hence, Arsenal should offload their unwanted midfielder as he could prove to be surplus to the club’s requirements.

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Written by Siddharth Suresh

Hello folks, I am an avid football follower who likes to read, report and play the world's most beautiful game. My other hobbies include writing poetry, traveling and exploring new cultures.
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