Granit Xhaka and Bernd Leno shone for Switzerland and Germany respectively on Sunday, up against each other in a Nations League game.
Arsenal teammates Granit Xhaka and Bernd Leno started against each other for their countries over the weekend. Xhaka was captaining Switzerland, after taking over the permanent captaincy from Stephan Lichtsteiner. Leno was in goal for Germany.
Even though he played well in his first game as permanent captain against Ukraine, providing an assist, Xhaka was on the losing side that day. He was clearly fighting to put things right against Germany, as he put in a top midfield performance.
The 27-year-old completed 88% of his passes, including six of nine long balls, and directly created two shots at goal. He also had five shots of his own, forcing three saves from Leno.
On the defensive side, Xhaka did well too. He made three interceptions and one tackle, without being dribbled past once. He also only made one foul versus winning two free-kicks for his team.
Granit Xhaka Vs Germanypic.twitter.com/JOCOAUwP9X
— BNS Comps (@BnsComps) September 6, 2020
As for Leno, he was actually the busier of the two goalkeepers on the day. Whilst Yann Sommer only had to make three saves at the other end, the Arsenal man had to make five. He also came out well to claim a high ball on one occasion.
There was little Leno could do about the Swiss goal, a sweetly-struck half-volley from inside the box. Overall, he’ll be happy with his day’s work, if also a bit disappointed in his team’s performance.
Both players are certainly making their case for a start against Fulham this weekend.