Arsenal fans have been mystified by much of this season over their manager Arsene Wenger’s treatment of Granit Xhaka. The Swiss midfielder was hailed excitedly by Gunners fans as the man who would finally bring some steel to their midfield. But Wenger has been consistently reluctant to pick him, giving him sporadic starts with a variety of partners.
Last night was a reminder of why the Professor knows best. Xhaka’s indiscipline has surfaced repeatedly in his career in the form of red cards, but last night it was a stupid foul on Ryan Fraser that gave Bournemouth their vital second goal.
To be fair to Xhaka he was covering for the errant Hector Bellerin, but the shove he gave Fraser didn’t leave the referee any choice. A situation with a player running away from goal in the corner of the 18 yard box was suddenly a penalty, and Bournemouth didn’t flinch when presented with that opportunity.