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How fan relationship transformed Xhaka’s Arsenal career

Granit Xhaka has been discussing how his relationship with the Arsenal fans improved his form.


Xhaka is having a sensational 2022/23 campaign with Arsenal.

The Swiss midfielder is operating in a slightly more advanced role this term, despite still playing in a double pivot.

This has allowed Xhaka to get forward more often and contribute to the attacking side of the game.

In eight league outings he has scored two and assisted three for the Gunners.

And now, he has revealed how his improved relationship with the Arsenal fans has given him a boost:

“I’ve had much more good times than bad times at Arsenal,” Xhaka told Arsenal’s match-day programme. “The only real down moments I’ve had were the stuff with the fans three years ago, but everything else for me has been very positive, very happy, and there’s been a lot of respect between everyone.

“It was funny because I was joking with Alex Zinchenko in the warm-up [before the Bournemouth game in August]. They were singing his name after just three weeks at Arsenal. I told him: ‘Alex, I’ve been here for six years and I don’t have a song and you have just got here and you do!’

“So I was joking with him on the pitch beforehand, and then at the end of the game I could hear our supporters singing my name. Maybe they heard me chatting to Alex!

“But seriously, it was an absolutely amazing, amazing feeling for me, because everybody knows what I went through with the fans. That’s in the past now.

“To turn it round and be able to show them the Granit that I always wanted to show them, to feel connected and feel their love gave me much, much, much more self-belief, and also more desire to give them something back.”

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Josh Barker

Josh Barker

Middlesbrough fan from the North East of England. @JoshBarker979 on Twitter.



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