Granit Xhaka says he can’t accept what has happened with him, and he still wants to hold discussions with Arsenal to sort things out.
To run over the situation, Xhaka’s poor form led to unacceptable and undeserved personal abuse from fans online, before a sarcastic cheer sent him into a rage as he was substituted against Crystal Palace.
The midfielder then provoked further outrage by gesturing to those jeering fans before seemingly mouthing “f**k off” and taking his Arsenal shirt off.
He posted a statement of apology on Instagram whilst blaming his actions on the abuse he’d received, but he had the club captaincy taken away amid suggestions he hadn’t been so apologetic behind-closed-doors. He hasn’t played for Arsenal since.
Xhaka was back on the pitch for Switzerland over the break, and with the captain situation dealt with and his mental state back in a place where he’s comfortable playing football again, it seemed like maybe we were reaching the end of the story.
Then the 27-year-old spoke to the Swiss media:
“I have a clear idea as to how things should proceed, and Arsenal know this as well,” Xhaka said. “Although I still have a contract with them, I will be glad to return to the club – so we can finally sort matters out.
“There will surely be a solution – as I can’t accept what has happened with me.”
Exactly what it is that Xhaka’s hoping for is anyone’s guess. Is the ‘solution’ an apology from Arsenal? From the fans? Does he want the captaincy back? Is he essentially saying he wants a move?
A transfer would hardly be a solution given the window doesn’t even open for over a month. They can talk all they want about the situation, he still has to do something for the next six weeks.
Either way, it’s good to know we have to keep hearing the same story over and over again for a few more weeks.