Football London journalist Chris Wheatley has claimed that it wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see Granit Xhaka leave Arsenal next summer.
The Swiss international has been an integral part of Arsenal’s side ever since he joined us. He has always been one of the first names on the team sheet – under Arsene Wenger, Unai Emery and now under Mikel Arteta as well.
However, he’s arguably the most criticised player in the country. Xhaka has consistently been a scapegoat at Arsenal. That’s not to say that he hasn’t made any mistakes, but even when he hasn’t, he has been treated horribly by pundits, media and some fans.
Arteta didn’t care about anyone else’s opinion of Xhaka. He has always seen the Swiss international as an important player, and Arsenal handing him a new deal this summer was proof that he is still highly valued.
Wheatley has confirmed that Arteta really does value Xhaka as a player. However, he claims that the midfielder’s contract extension was just to protect his value and it won’t surprise anyone if he is sold next summer.
Wheatley: Arsenal could sell Xhaka in 2022
He said in a recent Q&A on Football London: “The logic behind offering Xhaka a new contract was mostly to protect his value.
“With a deal expiring in 2023, he would have gone into next summer with one year remaining. Arteta also values Xhaka’s seniority in the dressing room. It wouldn’t be hugely surprising to see him leave the club next summer.”
Xhaka, once labelled ‘phenomenal‘ by Arteta, is not everybody’s favourite player at the moment following his red card against Manchester City before the break. Some feel he won’t even get back into the side if Thomas Partey and Albert Sambi Lokonga form a good partnership.
That could potentially push the Swissman out of the door next summer.