Mikel Arteta believes that Granit Xhaka will use his time on the sidelines to evolve and develop in other areas, although he doesn’t say what those areas are.
Against Tottenham last weekend, Granit Xhaka was injured when Thomas Partey pushed Lucas Moura over and the Spurs man landed awkwardly on Xhaka’s leg.
As the slo-mos showed us Xhaka’s leg bending in ways it wasn’t meant to, we all knew he would be out of action for a while.
The only question was ‘how much of a while?’
“Obviously, it’s really bad news personally for Granit,” Arteta said.
“He’s had a couple of incidents already this season with Covid, with suspension and now with long-term injury.
“It’s obviously a significant injury but he probably escaped an even worse injury than he could have had from the action because that action for the cruciate ligament is a tricky one.
“It’s what it is. His mentality is top. He knows what he needs to do now.
“He’s a strong man and he will use this time to focus on other things and I’m sure he will be back in the right place when he’s back.
“Obviously, he’s a big player for us, someone who is really important, and he will be missed. Other players have to step in.
“He will evolve and develop in other areas.
“This is the first big injury he has had, we are here to help him and I am sure we will find other ways around the team because we have other really good players who will step in and do the job.”
Granit Xhaka injury history
Before this latest injury that will keep Granit Xhaka out of action until the new year, he had missed only 19 games through injury since he arrived in the summer of 2016.
|19/20||Ankle Injury||Jun 18, 2020||Jun 24, 2020||6 days||1|
|19/20||Concussion||Dec 9, 2019||Dec 17, 2019||8 days||3|
|19/20||Back Injury||Aug 12, 2019||Aug 23, 2019||11 days||1|
|18/19||Bruised Rib||Apr 19, 2019||Apr 23, 2019||4 days||1|
|18/19||Groin Injury||Mar 28, 2019||Apr 15, 2019||18 days||4|
|18/19||groin strain||Jan 30, 2019||Feb 23, 2019||24 days||4|
|17/18||Bruised Knee||May 31, 2018||Jun 4, 2018||4 days||–|
|17/18||Flu||Apr 10, 2018||Apr 15, 2018||5 days||2|
|16/17||Ankle Injury||Apr 30, 2017||May 10, 2017||10 days||3|
He has, of course, also missed 15 games through suspensions, as well.