To Arsenal fans’ surprise, Granit Xhaka didn’t start against Liverpool but when he came on with 24 minutes left to play, he made his mark on the game.
The midfielder committed four fouls in the 24 minutes he was on the pitch, which is more than any other player in the Premier League this weekend. He picked up a yellow card and it wasn’t a positive opening display for the 23-year-old.
The Switzerland international had an impressive per-season so when he didn’t get the nod for our opening game, Arsenal Twitter was already a little confused. However, when he was thrown in at the deep end late in the second half while we were getting tanked, it seemed as if he was trying a bit too hard to make an impact.
No player committed more fouls in the Premier League this weekend than Granit Xhaka (4). He played 24 minutes. pic.twitter.com/xp7MVbb277
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) August 14, 2016
Xhaka will probably be frustrated but it was a difficult, tense situation to be pushed into. It was his first competitive match for us and he has plenty of time to adapt. He needs to learn his limits and boundaries, as well as how to play with the rest of the team.
We shouldn’t panic. Not about Xhaka, at least.