Monday, October 3, 2022

Saliba gets Xhaka’s seal of approval

It hasn’t taken long for William Saliba to make a big impression on Granit Xhaka.

Even with an own goal to his name, the Frenchman’s performances in the wins against Crystal Palace and Leicester have been promisingly composed and his teammate already believes the Gunners have unearthed a new leader.

Speaking to the Evening Standard, Xhaka remarked: “This guy is 21. I think in his first game in the Premier League for Arsenal he was unbelievable.

“You can see how…he looks like he is 30. He has discipline and big character. He is not so loud, but he is a proper leader in my eyes.

“You can see he is amazing. He has a lot of quality and yeah, we forget the own goal because for 90 minutes he had a great, great game.”

Talking of leaders at Arsenal, The Athletic reported earlier in the week that Mikel Arteta has selected Xhaka and Gabriel Jesus to support captain Martin Odegaard as part of a rebooted leadership group.

The decision to once again promote the Swiss to a position of responsibility underlines just how far his reputation has been rehabilitated since he was stripped of the captaincy by Unai Emery in November 2019.

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Xhaka would have supported Odegaard irrespective of whether he was selected to be a “deputy” by Arteta. He’s just that kind of guy.

Johnny 4 Hats

I think Xhaka is just glad there are other leadership candidates in this side. In fact, almost everyone in the first XI feels like their leadership skills are strong.

If you look back at some of the Arsenal sides Granit has been in, there was little or no other candidates for the armband.


Couldn’t disagree more. Watching AON last episodes shows in fact nobody in that XI was a leader. Xhaka best of a bad bunch.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

After watching All or nothing, I feel like Ramsdale could be future captain


Great player.
He will be immense for us for many year. Please, renew with us. Arsenal will take your career to greater heights.
On the other hand, I am surprised MA didn’t select KT as one of the deputies for the armband.
Are we seeing something different from what MA is seeing about KT?


Maybe reflective of an internal expectation of more limited playing time for KT

Billy The Dandy

Probably more that he’s injured too often to have any point in being one.

Jeremy DG

I think it’s just to do with fitness. If he has a consistent run in the side I’m sure he will be brought into the official leadership group.


I don’t think the Sub-Captain-Window slams shut til the end of August. He still has time.


I think he is spot on about Saliba. Slotted straight in and is a mighty presence at the back.
Anyway Xhaka used to make one Fup every 90 minutes, so he is in a good place to forgive and forget!


High praise from a very intelligent player who has been woeful misused and under appreciated. I am just happy he is finally getting his flowers.


I think he will sign, he’s in the most watched league in the world, he’s going to start allot. Why risk his starting spot by holding out on a contract renewal. (Tomi white Gabriel zinchenko/tierney is pretty decent either way)
Listening to S***s fans crying that conte might leave if he doesn’t get top 4, got me thinking I need to relax about a brilliant young player signing or not.


Top 4? Isn’t that like a trophy? Not a chance while sat in a stadium full of trophy repellant.

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