Bellerin calls for togetherness after Xhaka reaction

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Hector Bellerin has called on fans and players to stick together as Arsenal try to deal with the fallout of yesterday’s angry confrontation between captain Granit Xhaka and large swathes of the home support.

In ugly scenes just past the hour mark in the 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace, thousands at the Emirates, frustrated at their side giving up a healthy lead, turned on the Swiss when it was announced he was to be replaced by Bukayo Saka.

Rather than jog off, the midfielder chucked his armband at Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, slowly made his way to the touchline, mouthed ‘f*ck off’ at the crowd and cupped his ear to the ensuing boos. He then took his shirt off and went straight down the tunnel. The incident drove substitute Lucas Torreira to tears.

Unai Emery has since said that the player’s actions were wrong and stressed he’ll speak to Xhaka about his future conduct. It remains to be seen whether he retains the captaincy, a role he only recently had confirmed after a vote by the first team squad.

In the meantime, Bellerin, one of his deputies, has started to try and heal the rift.

 

He said on Twitter: “We are all humans, we all have emotions, and sometimes it’s not easy dealing with them. It’s time to lift each other up, not to push each other away. We only win when we are together.”

The right-back’s message is certainly one that all right-minded Arsenal fans should be getting on board with right now, even if question marks remain over the suitability of the current coach and his team selections.

Amy Lawrence, writing in The Athletic, reports this morning that a devastated Xhaka was visited at home by several senior players yesterday evening.

Arsenal play against Liverpool in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday before Wolves visit the Emirates for what will likely be another tense afternoon in N5.

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Mootilated

How weird. He must be a really nice guy if all the players seem to be getting behind him. Not sure what they see in him as a captain and as a player though, with all due respect. He doesn’t show any qualities on the pitch.

oneblvckdude

You might despise him and question his leadership abilities. But his fellow players don’t. The Mochengladbach coach didn’t. His national team coach doesn’t. And even though Emery might not be the sharpest tool in the shed, he’s been coaching for well over a decade and I’m sure he knows a thing or two about picking a captain. Xhaka’s wife just had a baby this month. Fans are all up in her comments on IG abusing their family. Insulting the player on and off the pitch. Booing him every game. Even 50mins after he just had an assist. And you entitled… Read more »

Mootilated

What? I’m just saying that he is not in good form and that he’s not showing any qualities a captain would show (on the pitch). That’s all. I don’t really follow any footballers or their wives on Instagram or Twitter or whatever so I don’t know what you’re even talking about. I don’t go to games either because I live in another country. I just gave my opinion on a player who is clearly out of form and mishandled. That opinion is built on watching this guy play for Arsenal for 4 years. My opinion doesn’t change because he’s offended… Read more »

oneblvckdude

And I’m just letting you know people crack. And yesterday was a culmination of appalling events from our fans. And we should stop acting like it happened in isolation. We the fans need to take a good look at ourselves and nip this nonsense in the bud. We are a joke to the footballing world right now. From Ramsey, to Koscielny, now Xhaka. Even Wenger was thoroughly abused and disrespected. I’m glad Mustafi is out of the firing line because these fans almost broke the young man. And seeing as Xhaka won’t be playing any game for the foreseeable future,… Read more »

Mootilated

There is a bit of a difference between players who contribute like Lacazette and Aubamayeng to players like Granit Xhaka and Shkodran Mustafi who are more often than not, responsible for us losing points in the league. As a fan, I wouldn’t take it against them if they wanted to leave because they have the quality to make any team better. So why would I get upset? I would thank them, actually. At least they were successful. Ah, so now we can’t criticise or show our concern either? How are fans supposed to do so? We’re ignored otherwise. I don’t… Read more »

oneblvckdude

We have three assists from our regular starters in midfield. And somehow, Xhaka is to be blamed for our toothless midfield. It is comical if not outright stupid that we lay the blame of our lack of attacking impetus and fluency in midfield on him seeing as the other two midfielders who are supposed to be the more attacking midfields out of the three are just as culpable, if not more. The foul on Son aside, what else has he done wrong this season that justifies the vile treatment from the fans. The assist aside, he didn’t put a foot… Read more »

Mootilated

Xhaka isn’t to blame per se. Moreso Emery is for playing him in a position where he so clearly is out of his depth. Still, Xhaka has been poor for us. Generally more negative games than positive. If you think he was good last game, I would ask you to please read the By The Numbers article on this very site which clearly showed he was, statistically, the worst Arsenal player on the pitch. Now, is it his fault or Emery’s? Emery’s probably. However, if we’re going to use the argument that we should be directing our frustrations at Emery… Read more »

Corona X

We didn’t “immediately transcend into this free flowing attacking side in his absence”, no. But we markedly improved: 60 minutes of Xhaka on the pitch, Palace completed 219 passes, had 4 shots on target. Arsenal had 7 attempts, 3 on target (2 from corners). 30 minutes of Xhaka off the pitch, Palace completed 39 passes. Had 0 shots o target off 2 attempts. Arsenal had 8 attempts, 3 on target. We also had a fair goal disallowed. That being said, Xhaka isn’t to blame for this, he’s just not good enough. The man to blame is Emery, who keeps picking… Read more »

Santori

The consequence of less possession for Palace when Xhaka was off had more to do with Saka being employed and us having 4 up top and Palace having to adjust.

This is where Unai made a good decision tactically, not bc of Xhaka being deficient in anyway.

Here again is a simple case of trying to use stats to prove something but in reality the cause is something-else.

Which is why you cannot rely on stats alone not least from an agenda ridden merchant like 7amkickoff.

Crash Fistfight

7amkickoff hasn’t written the By the Numbers piece on here since the season before last.

Mekus

Corana, you are correct, but I’ll rather say it this way>>> That behavior is unacceptable for any player, more so “a captain”. Thanks

Aaron

Spot on. And if you think it hurts the ego of a captain, go and ask JORDAN HENDERSON and the countless times he gets hauled off despite working his socks off. He knows he’s limited but Xhaka probably thinks otherwise.

Fans react and when they sing a song, players love it and it goes the other way too. If they boo, you can get disappointed but you don’t throw tantrums on the pitch. What Xhaka did was worse that GALLAS and that’s going only one way now.

mpls

Jordan henderson doesn’t get sarcastically cheered when he gets subbed off.

He’s respected for what he does bring instead of scapegoated for what he doesn’t.

Dave M

Yes, you’re right Henderson doesn’t get sarcastic cheers when he gets subbed because (1) his team are Euro champions, battled City all the way last year and are now in first; (2) his team doesn’t continually fall apart against good team let alone the average ones; (3) He is good enough for that team (even with his limitations) because he’s mobile and can defend (and works his arse off).

But you can be sure at Liverpool just like every other team they HAVE booed their own at times:
https://www.sportbible.com/football/news-watch-klopp-loses-temper-with-liverpool-fans-for-booing-team-20161127

Jack Watson

What foot did he not put wrong in allowing the cross to come in for Palace’s equaliser. You can defend emotions. You cannot defend his performances since he joined the club . I game in 15 he scores a worldy. The other 14 are in row Z. He gets booked every other game. After he gets booked he still makes rash decisions. He is nit the qualit we nedd3 as a player or a Captain

Santori

Tierney could not cover for a shot as well your point being?

Xhaka tracked his player, Luiz should have been aware and closer to Ayew.

Maul Person

Tierney… recently off a long injury and starting his first game in the EPL, which as most have said, is a step up from the SPL.
Xhaka… seasoned player in his third season in the EPL and infamous for his lackadaisical approach to defending.

Yes Luiz should have done better but using that argument suggests no player should bother stopping an opponent because there’s a defender there. Which is just stupid.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

He wasn’t infamous for his lackadaisical approach to defending until the Arsenal fans decided he was. He isn’t lackadaisical in his approach to defending for his National team either. I think there’s more than a small element of bandwagon jumping and exaggeration of his perceived shortcomings from a vocal part of the Arsenal support. Yes, he sometimes gets a bit over-excitable and makes the odd rash challenge, and has done through much of his career, but lackadaisical has never been one of his problems, wasn’t an issue before he joined us, nor while he was playing under Wenger. He’s been… Read more »

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

If Luiz is closer to his man then his man doesn’t get such an easy chance to score. Its basic defending. Its what the defenders are supposed to do when the ball reaches the goal area. Yes, the midfielders should be helping, but the defenders are the last line of defence and MUST do their job properly.

Danger Mouse

How to defend against Ayew the David Luiz way…. 1. Track Ayew’s run into the box. 2. For no reason run away from Ayew at the crucial moment giving him the space he needs to score. 3. Realize too late that Ayew now has the space to shoot cause you ran away from him. 4. Watch Ayew score. 5. Look sad. Expecting the usual avalanche of downvotes for stating the bleeding obvious: David Luiz is a terrible defender….Strange to me how xhaka seems to be shipping all the flack for the goal when Luiz’s incompetence at basic defending that gets… Read more »

Reality check

Society is doomed, common decency is vanishing faster than Iclandic glaciers, everyone just hate each other, so quick to put each other down.. seems it won’t be long before another world-war breaks out just to teach us again that, love and harmony is the only way.. nature itself is enough to keep phuking us over again and again, we don’t need to do its job.

MJay

oh my… liberalism is two faced…. we have to love each other at all costs, but are not allowed to the voice of opinions if it contradicts one another. Juxtapositioned?

Maul Person

Hasn’t put a foot wrong? Watch the analysis from MOTD2… his positioning was awful. Secondly, and more precisely he literally allowed the cross to come in for Ayew to score. I have no idea what kind of defence he was providing.

Defend him against the actions of the fans all you want but be realistic about the kind of player he is and the mistakes he’s made.

Homer

Oh, FFS.

Sure, Xhaka didn’t block the cross, but blaming him for the goal is plain bonkers.

More like that was chapter 487 of Arsenal having no discernible defensive shape. Luiz and Tierney both ball watching. Plenty of blame to go around on that goal. At least try and be a little objective, can’t ya.

Maul Person

Where did I blame him for the goal. I blamed him for allowing the cross to get to Ayew… which you seem to be suggesting is unreasonable. If that’s the case, please explain why it’s unreasonable to expect the threat of a goal to be stopped before it reaches the last defender.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Then who was it that screwed up to let them have the ball and start the attack in the first place. Did somebody misplace a pass? Did somebody give them a goal kick by missing with a shot? Whatever it was it was a Team failure. The Team Plays what Emery Says.

#EmeryOut

Santori

I swear if you listen to MOTD analysis, you will have shit for brains.

Half those people are inherently bias, the others may have had half decent playing days but haven’t got a clue about management.

Granit tracked his player fully. There is no way to completely prevent shots or crosses.

Tierney by example also let in a far more dangerous shot at goal in the game.

AND that cross needed to be taken care of by Luiz who was too far off of Ayew.

Thierry Bergkamp

So him letting the opposing player stroll in behind him on his way to getting an assist, is somebody else’s fault then?

Maul Person

Blind defence of a player without critical thinking. I call it the Brexit Defence.

Homer

This comment is total BS. You are blaming Xhaka and/or Mustafi for dropping points. Newsflash there, “Mr. Football;” its a team sport. Arsenal have collectively been awful for months. True, mustafi’s foul last season on Zaha was idiotic, but that is symptomatic of a larger problem, as Blogs alludes to in his main article from today. Neither player is my favorite. But Xhaka works hard. He’s being played out of position all the time. Mustafi: think there for a second. If you had NO defensive mid in frount of you, and FBs that are more often than not, up field/giving… Read more »

ChrisGoona

Laca and Auba have both missed glaring chances and have cost us plenty of points, the same way that Mustafi and Xhaka have cost us points from errors. The difference is that attacking chances missed are often forgotten after a striker gets another chance and scores. Mustafi in particular was always the last man standing and left in isolation, as a consequence of structural team problems. He is a very decent CB, an international, often dominates aerial duels and aggressive in the tackle. He lost is way like Xhaka, after the pressure mounted on him from the home crowd. We… Read more »

Cyprus The Immortal Gooner

Blaming the fans for Auba & Laca not signing an extension…are you certain they would, based on the ambition and performance of this team?

Santori

PLUS the second goal stemmed from our front players not being productive or able to stick the ball over 2 or 3 quick breaks before. They were wasteful in possession and it came right back at us.

nothing to do with Xhaka in midfield. he was actually diligent doing his job tracking the runner which is more than I can say for Guendouzi many times this season.

Maul Person

Wait… you’re saying Xhaka has been a better player than Guendouzi this season?

Seriously?

Mike Evans

This is Santori. No one takes him seriously. I see his name and don’t bother reading. I suggest you do the same

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

I don’t think you really mean the ambition of the team. Its the ambition and performance of Emery that decides that we should play the way we do. He seems to know exactly how he wants the team to perform. I don’t think he’s successfully explained it to them yet though.

IamaGoober

As I said on another post — I was absolutely shocked at the scenes yesterday. I haven’t ever seen anything like that before at any game before. I honestly felt so bad for Granit at the time, and I still feel bad for him now. I was pretty ashamed to see people hurling abuse at him like that. However — Xhaka shouldn’t have reacted in the manner he did. But I do understand what compelled him to. So Emery has to take huge responsibility for the way things are. He hung Xhaka out to dry yesterday. And he’s been doing… Read more »

ArseneIntelligence

I couldn’t agree more. I am already seeing Willock and AMN’s career’s being destroyed. Saka is next. It is for these reasons that Emery should leave asap.

Oregoon

Good post, but I have to take exception to your example of Francis working with Santi. Where on our roster is a player like Santi? We have not replaced him. The other midfielders are about two years, if that, from being a dominant force. New ideas may freshen us up, but any new coach still has a very young midfield to contend with if they don’t play Xhaka. Believe Emery plays Xhaka for his experience and leadership over his talent, but the lack of talent for this league has caught up with him. (One might also believe the lack of… Read more »

John C

Total nonsense, the Coquelin Cazorla partnership came about because we literally had no other midfielders, not because of some managerial masterstroke. They’d literally both been at the club several years before they played a single match together there.

And also if you remember it was Wenger who bought Xhaka to replace Coquelin and then sold Coquelin, so please stop with the rewriting of history.

kaius

Yeah, and let’s not forget how Wenger ended up asking Coquelin to play higher up the field than Cazorla (a bit like Emery asks Torreira to do). And the minute Cazorla got injured, our midfield collapsed as a unit, which cost us the title Leicester won. Coqzorla was not a system, it worked because Of Santi’s football brain.

It’s true that Emery can’t replicate that CM partnership. But neither could Wenger.

IamaGoober

@Kaius

The reason we conceded the title to Leicester in 2016 was due to us only buying Cech in the summer window. As during the season we lost Ozil, Cazorla, Ramsey and Sanchez to injury all at the same time. And Giroud also went on this 2 month goal drought when he couldnt score in a brothel.

Leicester were able to play their strongest squad each week due to the fact they only had domestic fixtures to contended with.

And we couldnt keep up the demands with the domestic and European schedules managing our ever growing injury list.

IamaGoober

@John You’re so blinded by your own hatred for Wenger that you never ever gave him credit for anything he did in those last few seasons. And no — you’re wrong. We were hampered by injuries when he put the two of them together for City away, yes . But there were still other alternatives. For midfield options Wenger still had available Rosicky, Chambers, Ozil, Flamini, Ramsey, The Ox – there are plenty of other formations he could’ve gone with using any combination of those players. But he went with Santi and Coquelin. And the fact that Santi had never… Read more »

John C

So up Wenger’s arse you believe even his shit is made of solid gold.

It was a completely random event so much so that the players came out and said it was their decision to play so defensive much to Wengers anger.

So adverse was Wenger to playing a defensive midfielder or Coquelin that season he behaved in the most classless sexist way towards Jacqui Oatley in an interview earlier that season.

And as you acknowledge, so convinced with Coquelin he replaced him with Xhaka and then sold him!!

IamaGoober

John — you’re clueless.

John C

Which bit is wrong?

db10s

Fully agree. I’ve made similar points in recent weeks. Xhaka has limitations. The whole world can see that but why does Emery still insist on playing him and guendouzi in the same roles. The parallel I would draw is with Wenger’s final years and the board kept on offering an extension to his contract. Which ultimately let Wenger continue and the toxicity kept building up which ultimately left a bad taste in his legacy. Emery here keeps continuing to pick Xhaka and exposes his flaws in his position week in week out without altering anything in the midfield set up.… Read more »

cowabunga

Although I agree with most of what you said, especially the part about Emery’s responsibility, I do think compensating for Xhaka’s deficiencies is actually why we are so back heavy as we are. I think we saw in the game against Nottingham Forest how Emery would ideally want our central midfield to work, where our midfield was a lot more dynamic than what I’ve seen in most other games with Xhaka in it. But the thing is, Xhaka is so slow, and he’s not very good at defending, so Emery tries different ways to cover for Xhaka’s weaknesses, which makes… Read more »

cowabunga

The Standard Liège was also a good example I think.

Awesomesauce25

It’s not Xhakas fault the coach picks him nor plays him in a role unsuited to him. He is picked so he plays where the coach tells him. Why would any player want to give blood sweat and tears for a fan base like ours.

db10s

That’s the thing isn’t it. I wish it didn’t turn out like this but the way I see it, every time Xhaka gets subbed off, it feels like an admission by Emery that he got it wrong. However why the hell does Emery continue trying out the same Xhaka Guendouzi pairing week in week out. Yet when we need to go for the win, Xhaka comes off. Are we not trying to go for the win right at the start of the match?

LFR

Is it the arsenal way to go to the press and call explayers opinions ‘bullshit’? Is it the Arsenal way to say you were scared of Watford? Is it the arsenal way to ostracise a player because the wages you agreed to pay him are now considered too much? Is it the arsenal way to throw a piece of pizza at a knight of the realm? Is it the arsenal way to push another manager in the technical area? Football is a passionate thing, the fans showed frustration at Emery by cheering the xhaka sub because he’s constantly picked despite… Read more »

Santori

The gaffer has poor options for the captaincy.

granit is trying to do the best he can.

The shite class these fans show and then expect to be shown respect, that’s what needs to be called out.

Arsenal fans are pompous self entitled bunch.

db10s

Self Entitled bunch yes but in this case, they did put up with this constant midfield imbalance for a long time. Maybe it’s just hit the boiling point now. Firstly Xhaka wasn’t the favourite for captaincy. Now given the captaincy, Xhaka hasn’t led by example in IMO. Deflecting blame for the spurs penalty, citing the wastefulness of our attackers. Saying we’re scared of watford, negatively reacting to Evra’s comments and now finally what happened yesterday. The guy needs to self reflect abit and let his actions on the pitch do the talking. I personally wish Unai would experiment with Torriera… Read more »

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

I don’t think Emery is capable of experimenting. He essentially gives the kids chances because he has been told to, but in doing so manages to treat them like shit and destroy their confidence by such stupidities as playing them out of position, or without decent experienced support, and then yanking them at half time. The man has no imagination whatsoever. His vision of how we should play may be working in his eyes for all I can tell, but has any player said anything to suggest they know what his vision actually is? He is extremely limited. Arsenal only… Read more »

Aaron

Yeah, people should just start watching golf instead.

Dave M

Anyone attacking players on social media (or even in public) is scum. Those actions are disgusting. Truly pathetic low-lifes. I am ashamed to be associated with people like that too. I’d recommend to any player to just avoid social media completely – what can they gain there? But there is a massive separation from that and what transpired yesterday. This isn’t the first time there has been a few cheers when a player has been subbed for his own team when the team isn’t doing well enough and it won’t be the last. That all escalating when Xhaka threw the… Read more »

Reality check

Dave M

You said it bro.. phuk them and their petty emotions, who cares. They are well payed so they should take schit, swallow it and don’t make a sound, money makes everything taste sweet. I would love to know if more money means more professionalism, I mean how does it work, is it a pill, or the money is stuffed directly in your mouth. Maybe, all your feelings die down and all you could feel is the weight of all that money on your shoulders.. very interesting

Dave M

Your sarcasm is rubbish. Xhaka is happy to come out and complain and bleet more expletives about Evra’s opinion on the team – be it right or wrong (IMO we just keep providing more evidence that he is right – rather than address why the team keeps getting told it’s mentally weak), and then expect absolutely no criticism from fans when (once again) he and the team give away a lead during another shite performance. Like I said these guys have a choice. Can’t handle a public, career as a professional footballer?! Then do something else. Find another job or… Read more »

Santori

For that matter why are you so thin skinned you can’t take a reaction from the captain? And since when has Evra’s opinion in football made much sense let alone held any weight. Complete rubbish. If fans can’t take what they dish out, then have some class. You should be supporting the team not trying to break it down. People like Evra only secrely rubbing their hand in glee pressing the right buttons for Arsenal fans to instigate self destruct of yet another season. Arsenal fans are simply one of the worse in the country, all too gullible and easily… Read more »

Dave M

Oh so it’s ok for the captain of a football team to tell his fans to fuck off because he got subbed and some fans cheered (it only kicked off when he threw the armband and walked off instead of getting off the pitch to hurry things along)?? Good look for the kids…good look for the fans that pay to subscribe to this. And you think this Arsenal are a mentally strong team? Please show me the evidence that they are. It’s not Patrice Evra playing poorly for the Arsenal and falling apart against pretty average opposition, and it wasn’t… Read more »

Duno

Xhaka actually wanted to be captain. Some would say he campaigned for it. At the end of the day it’s Emery’s fault that he became one. I said it from the beginning that making Xhaka captain would be Emery’s undoing.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Xhaka is an experienced and successful Captain. Check his career out. The problem is that he has been made a (1st of 5) captain for a team run by a man who believes that saying you have a philosophy and that the team must learn to play by it is the same as understanding how to coach a football team.

Reality check

Dave M

“Your sarcasm is rubbish”
Loll. Rubbish but effective, made you repeat the same thing in the form of another essay so no point going over it again, we just hold different values. Our disagreements aside but how can you blame him for sticking up for the club, especially when there is clear malice from Evra and also history of disrespecting us. It’s only right that Xhaka called him out for his disrespectful choice of words. Criticism is one thing disrespect is another.

Dave M

He’s not defending the team, he’s defending himself. Defending the team would be stopping goals and not giving away penalties. Something he isn’t very good at.

db10s

It’s not just down to that. One reason footballers are paid so highly is because it’s a 100% publicly professional job. Abuse, banter etc is part of the job. Yet I do sympathize with Xhaka to a degree. Our fans needs to stop scapegoating players so easily. Looking at the recent past. Walcott, Iwobi, Eboue and Mustafi all suffered this to varying degrees. Yet none of them reacted as negatively as Xhaka. And none of them were captains. They all tried their best to let their football do the talking. I feel like Xhaka doesn’t handle criticism well at all.… Read more »

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

“Abuse, banter etc is part of the job.” Yes? Really? Who else do you think should put up with abuse? Women? Police Officers? Firemen? Doctors? Abuse is NEVER an acceptable part of anybody’s job.

Santori

He wasn’t even playing poorly.

The fans are complete cretins because now you’ve doused the fire out of one of the players who has been trying hard for us in midfield.

Imagine if Torreira take a knock, you going to have to go back to Xhaka unless you want to start Willock or AMN.

Fans are generally fickle and not very clever at least the ones on AFTV …MAKING ALL THE NOISE.

db10s

To be fair. A good number of the AFTV fan cams said the fans were disgraceful. Anyways with regards to the Xhaka situation. I blame Emery for it. Xhaka is clearly not the most popular player but he made him captain regardless. Emery’s system really highlights xhaka’s limitations yet he continues to persist with trying the same midfield partnership week in week out. Xhaka’s stats are quite glaring so it’s obvious that the system isn’t working. It’s the manager’s job to find a solution to this but yet we’re not seeing the slightest change in the midfield set up. I… Read more »

Whowearsshortshorts

Spot on. (Although all players should get off the pitch quickly if we aren’t winning) but what you’ve mentioned about his wife and family is fking disgraceful, and if he’s just had a kid he must be shattered

Gunnerboreus

Hi I’m not as angry as you, but I absolutely agree that the crowd’s goading of the captain – our captain – was shameful. He’s a very frustrating player no doubt. But he had in fact played OK, with a very clever headed assist for the first goal….and to get the bird like that was so, so poor. As was his reaction. I suspect he will agitate to leave, as may some of his mates, and we may end up having to sell below market price. I couldn’t blame him for doing so. It feels like he has to move… Read more »

Edinburgh Gooner

Regardless of what the justification for booing him is, are we proud to be Arsenal fans this morning?

MJay

Nobody is asking you to be associated with the same club as us. Plenty of other clubs will accept your acceptance of mediocracy. I would have thought that living a life in disgust is more of an underachievement than that which the rest of use live by. All we are doing is to criticise and question someone who we pay handsomely with the purpose for him to accept the responsibilities of leading this great club on the field. He is not doing that well. That’s not up much for much debate, is it?

Homer

This post, MJay, you shouldn’t not made. Makes you look like a total [email protected] You are probably not that. But right now, you look like one. And that is unfortunate. First, “we” are not paying him, Creepy Stan is. “Our” direct contributions via tix, and shirts is minor. Its mainly TV and commercial deals – which you and I have and everyone on this blog have very little to do with. So, to try and hide behind the “we’re paying him hansomely” as a crutch to beat the man. You are way off base. Second, wrong again. Xhaka is an… Read more »

DaDude

You are right and wrong at the same time. If we spoke about City or PSG, I’d even agree with you. Even if they had 0 fans in the stadium and were not shown on TV, the sheiks would still sink their money into them, trying to win the CL. However, our owner, according to his own statements, runs a self sufficient club. Of course tix and shirts are insignificant. But why is Arsenal on TV and not Enfield Town? Cause the broadcasters want “us” millions of Arsenal fans to pay for a subscription to their channels. Why do Emirates… Read more »

db10s

I’ve made the same points about Xhaka being played out of position. However as captain, he has also said a few un-captain like things which is where I find a problem with.

He brushed off responsibility for the spurs penalty, instead he blamed our attacking players for being wasteful. He said we were scared against Watford. Went on a rant about Evra’s comments yet when he came off against palace, he acted exactly like what Evra said about Arsenal.

He should just keep his head down and let his football do the talkiing.

Da Boss

So your option to get people to see things your way is to insult other users of the site and call them names….? Good work mate.

Whilst I agree that criticism of him has gone over the top and yesterday can’t have been pleasant for him in the slightest, you can’t have a go at people for online abuse and then give everyone online abuse yourself. It’s hypocritical.

What is embarrassing is seeing the captain of your club tell the fans of that club to fuck off. That and that alone should see him stripped of the captaincy.

Andy

arsenal fans have been doing this for years with countless players. i have been in the stadium and witnessed sustained and nasty abuse of diaby and ramsey to name two. same has happened to eboue, song, denilson, coquelin, etc. etc. arsenal “supporters” don’t really support their team at all. the atmosphere in the stadium even at it’s best is pretty insipid compared to other teams. maybe it’s time arsenal “supporters” looked themselves long and hard in the mirror and questioned why they actually attend games… i don’t like xhaka as a player and i certainly don’t think he is a… Read more »

Armchair

Agree. My biggest problem with football–and I apologize if this offends anyone here–is that far too many of the fans seem to be rough young men–primitives–who are not intelligent or refined enough to keep the sport and the matches in perspective. They’re games, people. And this applies not just in England but in South America and other parts of Europe. Heavy drinking before matches–hooliganism and fighting; chanting, setting off flares, racist shouting–a lot of it is appalling. I look at these hordes of young roughnecks in the stands–jeering constantly–and it is like we’re back in the Middle Ages.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

But its not is it. The Arsenal crowd is made up of a mix of ordinary people off the street. They just get that old mob mentality when things don’t go the way they want, and they pick on targets that are easy, or which they have read criticism about online. They may be normal human beings, but normal human beings act like twats when they are gathered in groups and everything isn’t going exactly the way they want it to. As soon as they have crucified Xhaka they’ll find a new target, but that is sure to be another… Read more »

Homer

Very, very well said.

Ashburton Red

Agree with this.

Neil

Not sure how one could downvote this message. Even if you are not one that booed him off, fans bear a collective responsibility.

John C

What a load of old bollocks, Xhaka got booed and jeered because he’s in poor form, something that has always happened. I’m pretty sure i remember Eboue getting subbed after coming on as a sub himself in floods of tears such was the abuse he was receiving. I also distinctly remember groans when Keown would come on and line up in midfield when he came back. Xhaka has to own his current form and starting playing to the required standard of an Arsenal player, that’s definitely what Keown did and he went on to be a top class central defender… Read more »

Vivooty

I am sure Xhaka will not be the last player on the wrong end of some so called Arsenal fans….

Naked Cygan

Who gives a fk what he did on Germany? He has been totally shit for us. He is not good enough to play on England. You can twist this every way you want, but he is shit and should even make our bench, let alone start every fking game and be our Capitan. I do agree with you, talking shit about his family is unacceptable, but for his fking totally shit performances he deserves everything he gets along with the twat manager who keeps picking him.

Yclan

Are you Xhaka being undercover?

Frank Bascombe

@oneblvckdue, best comment I’ve ever read on here. Thank you, sir.

JoeGooner

I wish I could upvote this twice. I hate the whole ‘it is my right’ trope that fans have. The same as ‘it’s a free country’ or ‘free speech’. Yes people have rights, but don’t use them to abuse or belittle people. Keyboard warriors/ mob mentality. It’s sad.

Xhaka failed to handle himself professionally as well. His behaviour is far more understandable and acceptable than the behaviour of ‘fans’ who boo and shout abuse.

NairoGunner89

I am not a season ticket season holder, never been to the emirates and I can not begin to understand the frustration that match going fans face if Arsenal make me feel like drop kicking my tv at home almost every weekend, but it was wrong to jeer Xhaka, and it was unprofessional for him to react the way he did. Can the frustrations held by match going fans be displayed in a different way? Maybe booing Emery who deserves it more, or pre game protests? Because it is not Xhaka’s fault he is constantly picked by the same man… Read more »

Brendan

Oneblvckdude is spot on. I was embarrassed to be a goner yesterday. I am not the biggest fan of Xhaka, but I’ll tell he has one attribute that a generation of arsenal midfielders lackes… durability. Maybe you dont like that he has been available for selection, but name one midfielder who has been consistently fit for 3+ years. You cant helped the team or you are injury prone, or so small you injury easily, or it you just aren’t tough enough. Here is a guy getting cheered by thousands and he still fights. Keep following Yankee Gunner you ignorant, fair… Read more »

Sagebrush Farm

But then people that get injured are those that try harder on the pitch. So he can’t get injured walking around people’s shadows

Maul Person

A warrior who strolls off the field when substituted in a game his team needs every second to try and win and tells the fans to fuck off when they voice their displeasure at that…?

Oregoon

Yes. Throw the armband and take off the shirt before walking away? Some of us are haters, of course, but the reaction from Xhaka was of a child. “I quit” and “f u Arsenal” is what it said to me. How are we supposed to defend those actions going forward?

HoldenontoArsenal

They see what Moot is both unwilling and unable to see. A dedicated hard working teammate who always gives his best…no matter his limitations they admire and respect that. They understand how important that is and how hard it is to do. What part of the “soft” Arsenal team is because of the “soft” Arsenal fans?

Scigunner

I see a lot if people here justifying the embarrassing behaviour of our fans towards one of current players by pointing out previous episodes of embarrassing behaviour towards ex players such as Eboue and Ramsey. Yeah that makes it totally justifiable, amazing logic really!

Alex

Ok, he is surely a nice guy blablabla but why taking so much time to leave the pitch when you’re 2-2? Özil also got booed by fans when he left the pitch during the EL finale and Chelsea were leading 2-0. He didn’t have this attitude. Of course, it is too much from the fans but a captain must keep his nerves and we know Granit “we were scared” Xhaka is not of that kind.

Ordnance Dave

Spot on. Xhaka is nowhere near the first or the last footballer to get booed off by their own fans. Guess what, you wanna play at the highest level? You get the highest scrutiny and pressure, cause you get the highest pay. His reaction was beyond pathetic, take your boo, get off the pitch, pick up your check.
Frankly Xhaka, fuck off.

Santori

The sort of shite Arsenal fan I mention, self entitled to think you know the answers but instead of support the team, feel everyone owes you for living through the club.

get a life.

Ordnance Dave

Oh the irony of your comment is so delicious.

Aaron

Yup, remember Eboue when he got hauled off a few minutes after coming on. He left crying and was it all Arsene’s fault back then?
Eboue didn’t abuse in return either.

This Xhaka substitution had to be made to chase the win and the reaction from the captain was silly to say the least. I doubt he would play again until he gets shipped off on loan or sold in January.

yen

Great stuff from Bellerin. A true captain’s reaction.

No point in discussing yesterday’s events anymore as everything has been said already. Will be interesting to see if Emery makes it past the Interlull.

Dave M

Exactly. These guys seem pretty tight. That’s generally a good thing. But IMO it’s to a fault with the current squad. They are too internally focussed. This is one of the first true positive comments for both squad and fans to come out of the Arsenal in some time. It recognises the growing separation between players and the fans and calls for us all to come together. Players MUST remember they do what they do and are paid what they’re paid because of #1 the fans. If they don’t they are going to further lose the fans and the atmosphere… Read more »

A Different George

I don’t know how Bellerin is viewed in the dressing room (which matters), but from his behaviour on the pitch and with the media, he is the obvious long-term choice for captain.

Toure Motors

I have some sympathy for xhaka, he’s only a byproduct of Emery’s bad management. He shouldn’t be captain and he shouldn’t be an automatic choice. Squad might have picked xhaka but Emery should not have approved the choice- the manager should always pick the captain. The whole team is playing massively below it’s potential and that’s on the manager solely

Dave M

Yes I agree with you, Xhaka is where he is because he has so (too) much backing from Emery who did this weird thing with the captaincy elections (backfired now) and because he picks him automatically too. But Xhaka still chose to do what he did and he also chose to focus on Evra’s remarks after the last loss rather than coming out and trying to inspire improved performances and (god forbid) show something to the fans that perhaps the players might owe them better than what they are showing right now…you know…something captainly…

yen

As a fan I feel horribly when unsure if I want the team to succeed in the next 3 games – and if I’m therefore really ‘a fan.’ If they do so in a convincing way – sure! But I just don’t want Emery to be rescued by individual brilliance again, same for completely sustainable occasions such as scoring from 2 free kicks in a single same, as well as (almost) scoring from 3 corners. Those are absolute one-offs and have little to do with the way we’re set up. Read that Laca seemed enraged after we scored the third… Read more »

yen

*UNsustainable!

Pepe Le Piaow

That’s the real issue here. If we lose those players and continue to fall down the table, we’ll lose all drawing power. We’re on the edge at the moment and need to make big decisions soon.

Twatsloch

The decision is easy. Lose Emery.

mrugunner

and xhaka too please

Jeremy C

We are all together, we want change!

Pakgooner

Not the Swiss’ fault, I didn’t think he had an all too terrible game yesterday but really it goes both ways: as a captain you don’t expect the armband chucked around and slow trotting, you air your negativity elsewhere because your team comes first, but on the other hand Xhaka tries his level best and, well, this is all he has. He is picked week in week out by Unai and that too as his captain, so the pressure build up finally ceded last night. Nevertheless, even with all the sympathy and understanding from players, I think it’s difficult for… Read more »

Akbar

This is all Emery’s fault (I know I’m stating the obvious), the club is clearly in turmoil and something needs to be done to stop this madness from unravelling. The players are confused, served up in a platter for criticsm, and agree or not this guy is doing nothing to protect his players. That’s one thing Wenger would always do, alas!

Bergkamp2Wright

The whole Xhaka debacle is only an issue because emery not only plays him week in Week out when we clearly have better players but he also made him ducking captain. I blame Emery entirely and I’m hoping they sack him this week!!!

Amusa

The fans and Xhaka were both appalling.
The fans and Xhaka should both publically apologize and move forward.
Our club is being mocked worldwide. We need to move on and in order to do that Emery must leave.

Dan

I really sympathise with Xhaka on this one. People do things in the heat of the moment and it’s not fair for people to judge him on that.
His performances so far have not been good but that can be said of most of the team so far this season.
What happened yesterday is a symptom that something really won’t is happening at the club and something needs to change fast before things really get out of hand.

Bobberton

Honest question Do we have the worst home support in England? Not looking to start a flame war, but I’m honestly so disappointed Fans are starting to remind me of teams like Real Madrid and Valencia who regularly boo their own teams and players Real fans because they’re entitled, Valencia fans because they think they’re better than they are Arsenal fans might be both The atmosphere at home has been, at times, toxic for years now And I understand it doesn’t just come down to the fans, and that it works both ways But I feel like at home games… Read more »

Goonerink

so just discounting the death threats and stuff karius and coutinho and even robbertson have gone through?

your glasses are very rose tinted Mr.Lennon…..

but i agree we are very toxic, however I dont blame the fans 100%, we didnt get here overnight.
the day aftv got fame for ranting about our shortcomings should have been the day KSE sold up or put some cash in. nipped it in the bud and stopped a fan backlash after seeing their once invincible side turn in to high punching middleweights.

Bobberton

I’m talking about the home support What happens online is another issue, and utterly despicable, and i don’t think any club is clean of it. On a different tangent, for example, I think our away supporters are usually amazing I didn’t blame the supporters exclusively As a professional and as the captain Xhaka’s reaction was in the wrong But as a human I can find empathy for him And of course there’s a bigger picture to this than just Xhaka and just one game And yeah, like I said, it’s been like this for years now The Eboue incident was… Read more »

Mother

Hector yet again showing he’s made of genuine captain material. Xhaka on the other hand, has destroyed what little support he had left. There was no abuse from the fans, just ironic cheering for a player who has been in poor form for months and has never been good enough since his arrival. He may not pick himself or asked to be captain etc. but his immaturity, comical lack of composure and refusal to improve his game is deeply frustrating. As a professional athlete and as the captain, Xhaka should’ve taken it on the chin and exited the pitch as… Read more »

Takeshita

His behavior was extremely Joey Bartonesque, it’d have fallen to the lowest had he dropped his pants. Thankfully he didn’t!

Vonnie

Sometimes though, you can’t just keep taking it on the chin, and you do or say things that you can’t help and may regret afterwards. All our players are media trained and have support and all those things that can help, but at the end of the day they are human beings with feelings and emotions. I guess all these sanctimonious fans who are ripping him to shreds have never, ever lost their rag when under pressure. If we’re not careful this club will have a reputation that no self-respecting player will want to come here, the rubbish manager, the… Read more »

Gunnerboreus

There was vitriolic and very unpleasant abuse around me immediately his number came up. It was very sad. Undoubtedly it grew in volume as Granit lost the plot on his way off – but let’s not pretend there was “just ironic cheering”….that’s not what happened yesterday

Marc

HB shut the front door and go wear yourself a bloody Poncho aight. Give Matteo tha Don Guendouzi the Captaincy, where I am from, we call a foul he took “Taking 1 for the Squad” ??

Arsenonymous

Hehe. Anyone else notice he chose a picture where he’s wearing the armband?

… Just sayin’.

Pepe Le Pew

Toxic fans like the angry bloke on AFTV. No brain cells but a full mouth. What Bellerin says is spot on. We are human and faillible, yes we can improve on Xhaka and Emery but we need to improve as supporters too. We could gamble on Freddie to lift us up until the end of the season. If a success we carry on. If not we should go for Jardim who have reconstructed a team in less than a season. He his the next best thing after Klopp. I can hear already the Allegri chants like the useless Ozil chants… Read more »

Pepe Le Pew

This is the Trump era I may add. Where dumb opinions prevail over common sense.

A P

That must be the reason you keep spamming your dumb opinions.

Tim

Regarding Allegri, one could argue that there is a certain level of competition in the CL… where what he did is not to be dismissed.

Goonerink

regarding jardim, he had been at the club for a while until theirry gave him an extended holiday.

it worked for Monaco, could it work for us/

gee

Victory through harmony.

Reality check

Joke of the day..

gee

Feel a bit sorry for the lad, can’t be easy and the look on his face was like he was ready to take on the whole stadium, the stewards, police and the armed forces.

GraeB

Not all of those – he’s Swiss, perpetual neutrals.

Flavoured Rice

Google who his father what and what he went to jail for. Xhaka comes from a fighting background

Tapps

For a fee…..

Belfast Gooner

Xhaka’s reaction was def out of order and he should apologise unreservedly to the fans for his behaviour yesterday. However, it is clear that the players have 100% respect for him and I think if he comes out and apologies then we need to move on from this. Xhaka does a lot of work off the pitch that goes unreported with fans etc, as do a lot of the players. Yes he has not been good enough on the pitch but there is an obvious trend here, we’re fans get on the players backs to the extent that it really… Read more »

Vonnie

I remember that post and it made me very sad. Our players have had about three years of toxicity from the fans, first with Wenger Out, then the fallout during the second half of last season and now this. They are probably really struggling with confidence and no wonder.

Oregoon

Confidence is the issue, and we continue to lose that game by game. Watch our first touches and passing. We seem to play very tight, and without any joy. Change is coming, as this malaise is only going to continue until new leadership is put in place.

Hiiamtom

100% agree with this

Twatsloch

He may have been wrong with how he reacted but the people who jeered him started it. No way would I apologise to them if I was him. I’d be asking for a transfer at the first possible moment.

Faizal hashim

I certainly dont blame xhaka, regardless of his performance on the field but i blame the coach for keep insisting to play him. As a player you do what the coach tells you to do. So in this case. Emery should be the one to be blamed. Fans are not wrong to be angry n frustrated either. They paid good money to watch n support arsenal. But if the way arsenal are playing now going to continue until end of season i’m afraid by then they are playing to an empty stadium, no UCL n no Europa Cup as well.… Read more »

Pooner

The mood around the the club feels so toxic at the moment. I’m starting to wonder whether getting rid of Emery will fix it, (and I absolutely want that to happen) or whether there is something irrevocably broken.

Dave M

Football is broken and has been for years. Sadly, it’s what we all love. But the real problem is that the game is run by money and not even money just generated by the game itself. Some billionaires use us and the players as hobbies. Sadly, the state of football can also be used to sum up the state of the world right now: many of the same billionaires got us by the balls there too.

mpls

As supporters we have to look at ourselves as well. Sport is a beautiful thing – a recreation, an escape, and yes, it takes the form of outlet. Unfortunately that outlet has become too toxic, too angry, and too perpetual. Political anger, social anger, personal anger, economic anger, etc.

Too many carry all of their personal baggage and rage into it and use the players, managers, and clubs as their whipping boys. It’s abusive.

And now it’s magnified by social media because no-one seemingly has to own up to what they’ve said or thinks they have to.

EducatedLeftFoot

I sympathise with Xhaka. Fair critique of a player’s performances plus how the manager is handling them is justified but what is not justified is the lack of support and the abuse he has received leading up to this. Constant abuse on his Instagram (eg: shares a picture of his baby and it is followed by dozens of abusive rants on how xhit he is) and frequent jeering on match days. that feeling of being a hated man at his own home has undoubtedly led to his explosion. I don’t condone his meltdown- but I think “fans” need to think… Read more »

Tim

I am really disappointed with most articles and reactions about this issue. The only good one I’ve read is Amy Lawrence. It is so dishonest not to interpret what happened yesterday without context, meaning to see the jeers and booing (which are not abuse per se) as the tip of an iceberg of concrete, proven abuse that has been going on for weeks and of which the player has been obviously aware of and affected by. Also, sprinting off the pitch when subbed of at the 60th minutes is hardly standard Arsenal player behaviour (Laca, Mesut)… I know the captain… Read more »

A Different George

There is certainly an unconscious double-standard when judging the performance of players. Favourites get a pass: almost no mention of how easily Holding was turned for the first goal on Thursday (the primary error in allowing the goal) but much more about Xhaka not doing enough to stop the cross yesterday (maybe the tertiary cause of that goal).

Alex

Hopefully this is not a forum only for the “right minded”. Dangerous connotations

Fatgooner

It’s not “togetherness” that we need right now; it’s decisiveness. Emery is a busted flush and needs to go right now. We have made absolutely no progress under him and the longer he remains the more toxic the atmosphere at the club will become. Our inability to defend with any competence (Emery’s greatest weakness), his illogical team selections and his failure to build a winning mentality all mean that his position at the club is now untenable. Stan needs to act now, even if that means bringing in a caretaker boss until the end of the season. If we continue… Read more »

Hiiamtom

We’re currently a long way from the Arsenal we want to be, but the one thing that should remain through the good times and the bad is our class. The fans let themselves down yesterday – booing one of our own is not something I expect from The Arsenal.

Sadly, a toxicity seems to have crept into certain factions of our FANBASE (especially online) that is destructive and quite frankly un-Arsenal. Let’s support our team and support our players through the tough times – positivity breeds positivity. COYG.

Hiiamtom

*fanbase

Jack Watson

As an adult we are accountable for our actions. There is always a price to pay. Emotions are controllable. He should be stripped of the Captaincy at a minimum. Disrespecting the supporters, the manager & his team mates is totally unacceptable.

Jean Ralphio

Best thing the club can do is to let Emery go. It’s clear the players are increasingly getting frustrated with the performances.

NorwegianGooner

When being subbed, Xhaka, as our captain, should have sent a strong signal to the rest of the team; “let’s win this one lads”, by running of the pitch and give Saka some motivating words. That is what leadership is about and that is what we should expect from our captain.
But also, our team, our Arsenal, including our captain, should expect full support from the fans until the whistle blows. Anything else is not acceptable.

Don Cazorleone

Correct – That’s what leadership is and is what we expect of leaders.

Now what should we expect of supporters…

Drew

Our fans disgust and embarrass me sometimes. I think players will stop wanting to come here as they are 2 or 3 mistakes from being the next Mustafi or Xhaka also the young players won’t take as many chances in case the fans turn against them. Whatever you think of Xhaka as a player he has never hidden and as far as I can tell always tried. I’ve never seen him hide. The flaws in his game are obvious but he doesn’t deserve the kind of reaction he got last night. It’s not like he is deliberately playing badly. I… Read more »

Der32

It’s not AFTV. Even if you don’t watch AFTV you can see how Emery’s consistency in picking Xhaka is ruining our midfield balance. How does that have anything to do with AFTV?

Drew

I meant the mentality. And if you think it’s okay to boo and jeer one of our own players then I’m afraid I lump you in that group as well. Our fans act like spoilt children. I’m old enough to remember long before the Wenger era when we played some truly terrible football. We had a player called Gus Ceaser, let’s just say he wasn’t great but I remember one game when he was warming up on the touchline and we sang his name non-stop. Nowadays he would have been destroyed. And yes I blame things like AFTV who strive… Read more »

Der32

Drew sorry but don’t put words in my mouth. Did I ever mention I think it’s ok? All I said is it’s not AFTV’S fault, and I don’t hear any argument from you otherwise. You’re the one acting like a mug right now.

Drew

Maybe try reading what I said?? I didn’t say it was all AFTV fault I said I blame things like AFTV. It’s this entire culture built up around our club that is inherently negative, that it creates clicks and watches if we are constantly slagging off our own players or at each others throats, but please enlighten me as to how that makes me a mug…

Goonerink

Gus caeser wasnt earning the net annual income of a small nation PA.

i think its ok to boo one of our own, but thats where it stops, a reactionary noise to show your current feelings.
if you’re booing before he gets on the pitch, or the net time he plays or whatever then thats a taking it too far, let alone hounding on Socials.

Drew

What’s your point exactly? Had Gus been playing now he would have been paid very handsomely, likewise if Xhaka had been playing back then he would have been earning far less. You have your opinion, but in mine it is never okay to boo our own players. I just don’t see what you think it will achieve? You reckon if you boo them they’re suddenly going to go, “Oh yeah, you’re right I will now stop playing badly and be amazing!” I guess it comes down to what you think is appropriate, help someone having a bad time or make… Read more »

Pepe's left foot

Very mature words from Bellerin which must be repeated “We are all humans, we all have emotions, and sometimes it’s not easy dealing with them. It’s time to lift each other up, not to push each other away. We only win when we are together.” First and foremost we must respect the fact that Xhaka has just become a father and during this emotional time been subjected to vile online abuse. We should now focus on giving support to a man that reacted uncharacteristically in an environment which had become hostile towards him and was a tipping point from previous… Read more »

Mark

I agree with Bellerin to some extent, but Xhaka (and others) need to understand that they are able to be play this game and make the money they do (and live the lifestyles they do) because of the fans both at the stadiums and at home that watch on TV, buy the merchandise of the team, support the companies that advertise around the team, etc.. Fans have a right to express their opinions at the game with cheering, booing, indifference, etc. and players need to understand that and have a thicker skin in my opinion. Of course I don’t agree… Read more »

IanH159

My issue with booing your own player, let alone your captain, is that it’s actively hurting the club that these fans claim to support. What is the benefit of it?

As you say ‘team comes first’, before individuals, inducing fans who paid for the ticket, Sky or a merch.

Lerpy

I fully agree that you should be allowed to boo your own team or players if you want. They buy the ticket.

I just think it must surely be counterproductive. It would if my clients booed me.

IanH159

Of course, fans are allowed to do it, that’s obvious enough at Arsenal home games when the team gets booed too often at half time if things aren’t going well.
I don’t agree that ‘buying a ticket’ should give you that right – try that argument at other sports venues (e.g. Wimbledon), or at just generally at all paid for entertainment events such,…, maybe theatre – I mean if I paid for a ticket, surely I can boo an actor who is underperforming 🙂

Benderville Bondrousse

In all honesty I have never been convinced by Xhaka despite his managers and even national coach backing him. He makes too many costly errors on the pitch and doesn’t cover well enough for the back 4. However, what happened yesterday from the fans is despicable.

Under no circumstance can you act like that towards a player, an Arsenal captain and a human being. Its utterly, utterly wrong. Poor man must be distraught at walking off a pitch and having thousands booing him and millions around the world witnessing it on TV. Disgusting. Those fans should be ashamed.

khanthegunneer

@SemperFiArsenal
Eboue was booed, Ramsey and his family were abused, Wenger was abused, Mustafi and Xhaka booed and abused on social media. Unai the latest target.
This is coming from the same fanbase who talk about our class, tradition & history with pride.
What a toxic fanbase we’ve become. —

this tweet sums everything correctly.

never been a fan of Xhaka but what happened last night shouldn’t have happened.
and not to justify the fans but if you see the whole things again we can see the moment he threw the armband to Auba the abuse increased.

heknockedoutjohnterry

…and I’m done with the comments section. Should have known better really.

hoffsstuntdouble

I’m not surprised that Bellerin has emerged as peacemaker, he is maturing and is popular in the dressing room and with most of the supporters. However, Hector hasn’t been entirely spared the vitriol of some fans in the not too distant past. Who said fickle?

Lettra

Xhaka was wrong to act out but I totally understand the reaction some players of the past would have cried on the way. Xhaka got pissed and responded. He’ll probably be stripped now of captaincy forced to apologies and perhaps will be kept out of the limelight and squad a few games. I’ve already forgiven him ..( Not here to make friends or stand for election so ) . This action was easier to forgive than the mistake he made for the penalty in the run in.. I’m not over that one but yesterday he got shit and gave some… Read more »

Santori

What’s there to forgive? Are fans so thin skinned to be so easily offended by a human reaction by a captain trying his best for us but being goaded by a significant segment of the fan base who pretend to speak for the rest of us? Fans are too self indulgent. They are correct that without the fans the club is nothing. BUT they are wrong that just because they spend the money they speak for everyone. AND frankly no other club provides such a shit atmosphere as at Arsenal. Instead of building our team up when they are struggling… Read more »

Twatsloch

At least Spuds are shite too. Could be worse.

Bergkamp2Wright

If we stick with Emery it won’t be long until they are above us.

Twatsloch

I agree.

HoldenontoArsenal

If I was a player in todays environment of social media, fan influence and overall team environment I would rank Arsenal as a team to more likely avoid playing for if choices exist. Just like a player of color would like to avoid a racist environment around a club, a happy highly sought after player would choose a more enthusiastic, supportive and positive club. Arsenal fans have a noticeably higher than average % of nasty entitled and lazy fans…lazy at making sure they hold themselves to the same ideals, standards and class they expect from the players, coaches and club… Read more »

Goonerink

Gnabry left because noone rang him whilst tony pubis was calling him fat, and he had german mates saying hed walk into the bundeslige.
iwobi left to double his wages and get the same amount of first team football at a club with the same realistic goals.

Self hating is part of this damn toxicity.

Santori

Its time for quality blogs and Arsenal fans to stand up and show that we are not the low class self conceited/indulgent fans that unfortunately a minority embolden by social media highlight have painted the rest of us as. Because unfortunately, there are far too many gullible and fairweather fans among the ranks with too great a sense of self importance. As much as granit may have been wrong to react, remember if you were in his shoes : 1) He is human and not stupid to not be oblivious to the nonsense being thrown at him from a significant… Read more »

George

I don’t disagree with everything you’ve said, but goddamn you’re a smug, cherry-picking, blowhard.

Twatsloch

I just down vote him automatically now.

Santori

Some people here conveniently point finger at Unai to blame for this incident which is even more hilarious. The manager has not many good options in front of him. He was tentative as is picking granit but the Swiss is a much improved player on his own efforts. You may not agree with Unai but picking a captain is not on ability alone. Other qualities come into play. Granit has never hid from a game and always tried to pull the team together. Some people of course wank off to Torreira over Granit but then ignore facts like last game… Read more »

Santori

The other thing is much of again the perception that Xhaka is unfit for captain is largely imaginary or preference. He was by far not the worse player yesterday. Contributed to the first goal with a nod down to Sokratis. Covered well defensively played us forward mostly. Some people will of course look for a sideway pass and then say that’s why we need Torreira when frankly he made very few sideway passes and Torreira would make the same amount. Its what these cretin fans are looking out for and conveniently ignore mucha s they did with mustafi and it… Read more »

Ashburton Red

Emery has hung Xhaka out to dry by not backing him with 100% conviction as his captain since the beginning. Lots of chat about how weak the whole captaincy selection process made Emery appear. This is the result of that. Yesterday, Emery’s comments criticizing Xhaka immediately after the game show a quick betrayal of his captain and were not necessary to be made at that time. Emery can now hide behind this incident as a reason to (revert to the fans long held opinion and) drop Xhaka and strip the captaincy from him. Pathetic. I’m gutted that Emery is making… Read more »

IanH159

How does what this so claimed supporters did yesterday benefit Arsenal FC?
I’d say it’s doing the opposite, it hurts the club and our results. I can’t see how Xhaka or the team will now perform better as a result of it.

Thierry Bergkamp

Fans and players need to show togetherness in doing what Chelsea are well known for. By that I mean turning on the manager, and doing whatever is necessary to get him out.
Xhaka has been nothing but shit since he’s been at Arsenal, but it’s Emery and the previous manager who have always stuck with him.

Bergkamp2Wright

Exactly.

Santori

Amy Lawrence one of the better and more lucid journalist out there. These are the sort of levity voices we should heed instead we see people trying to suddenly give Evra some sort of platform. Well done blogs for at least publishing this link. As much as we decry a lack of leadership on the pitch or club, there can also be a lack of accountability in social media that has engendered a false sense of entitlement by certain fans that make more loud noises than common sense. They hold sway over a shallow and gullible segment who do not… Read more »

Thierry Bergkamp

It’s just my opinion, but Evra is more qualified to talk about football than fucking Amy Lawrence, or any other journalist. He was a serial winner and good player who spoke, and still speaks his mind. The truth is what usually hurts though.

A P

What? Senior players have to make a pilgrimage to Xhaka’s house, and Torreira is crying because of this?

WEAK. No wonder Xhaka said the team is scared.

John C

The first time i’ve agreed with you

StuArse

Through all this anger I have not seen anyone offer the argument that Emery may have been subbing Xhaka to stop him getting a yellow card, his 5th, and therefore making sure he was available for the next game. Perfectly reasonable argument that ended up going down completely the wrong way and now we’re in a mess! If this was the reason, way didn’t Emery say something post game and protect his player? Is he just deflecting from his own poor decision making? On another note, I heard an interview on the radio this weekend by some pro footballer. The… Read more »

mrugunner

when are they getting sacked?

T.A.

This is really depressing. I have been supporting Arsenal through thick and thin for 50 years and I have NEVER witnessed anything like this. Other players have (regrettably) been on the receiving end of even nastier fan reactions (Gus Caesar comes to mind) but never a captain and none reacted in this shameful way. I, like other here, put much of the blame on the manager (or is he now called a coach?) but I also think the recruitment people have much to answer for. Bringing in people with talent is great but they also must be evaluated on their… Read more »

Laca New Signing

I get Bellerin’s appeal to fans for understanding and accommodating players’ shortcomings. I only wonder if the players have tried reaching out to Unai Emery with the same message concerning his actions on Mesut Özil. After all he’s a human being too isn’t he?
#EmeryOut