Granit Xhaka insists he always planned to join Arsenal for the long-term, and he’s happy with how things are going for him at the moment.
Having been at Arsenal for almost five years now, Granit Xhaka is one of the longer-serving members of the squad. Excluding players who came through the academy, only Calum Chambers and Mohamed Elneny have been around for longer.
Xhaka claims this was always part of the plan for him. He never wanted to use Arsenal as a stepping stone before moving on somewhere else, he joined hoping for a long stay.
“If I’m honest I always saw myself in this club,” Xhaka said. “I didn’t come to this club for two or three years, I came here for long-term. Of course, you never know what happens in football.
“After what happened with the fans one year ago nobody was thinking I would still be here and speak with you guys. This is football. Sometimes things happen, you are very surprised but the good thing is how you come back.
“I come back very strong thanks to the help of the team, the coach and the club made it easier.”
As for what’s next, Xhaka confirms that when summer comes around he’ll have two years left on his deal.
That’s usually when decisions are made, either to extend the contract or sell on. The Swiss international says he’s happy where he is right now.
“Everyone knows my contract after this season is two seasons more,” Xhaka continued. “I’m very happy at the moment at this club. Let’s see what happens.”
It’s somewhat hard to judge what Arsenal will do with Xhaka, because Thomas Partey has spent so much time out injured. It’s difficult to assess whether the pairing works well, or whether Xhaka might drop out if Partey were more available.
For now, he’s playing a lot and has a key role in the remainder of Arsenal’s season. If he wants to stay and wants a new deal in the summer, now is the time to earn it.