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Arsenal's best player of 2021 named by CIES Football Observatory, decision splits the fanbase

Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka has been named by the CIES Football Observatory as the Gunners’ best player in the first three months of 2021.

The 28-year-old, who has featured in every match for Arsenal this year, is ranked seventh in the list of outfield Premier League players, with a score of 80.9.

Chelsea’s Jorginho tops the Premier League standings, while the likes of Ruben Dias, Wilfred Ndidi, Luke Shaw and Thiago Alcantara have also scored highly.

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As mentioned on the CIES Football Observatory website, they have developed a “robust approach” to measure the performance of players on an objective basis.

The general performance index is computed from the statistics of players in six areas of the game: rigour, recovery, distribution, take on, chance creation and shooting.

Given Xhaka has started 21 matches in 85 days and completed the 90 minutes in all but two of them, with positive performances for the most part, he has certainly contributed a lot to Arsenal over these past few months.

The Switzerland international has always divided opinion amongst the fanbase, and the CIES Football Observatory’s decision has led to more debate about his role at the club.

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