Manchester United legend Phil Neville has absolutely torn into Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka after his performance in Switzerland’s World Cup exit at the hands of Sweden.
The Swedes will now take on England in the World Cup quarter-final this weekend, with Xhaka highly unconvincing on the biggest stage once again after a difficult time with Arsenal.
Despite initially impressing as a youngster in the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach, Xhaka appears to have been exposed for his lack of real work rate or physical prowess at the highest level of the Premier League and on the international stage.
Neville was highly critical of the 25-year-old as he gave Emil Forsberg far too much room for Sweden’s goal, basically accusing him of not being a proper holding midfield player, but a ‘fake’.
‘The goal he just went to the floor and let Forsberg go past him too easy,’ Neville said on the BBC, as quoted by the Metro.
‘He’s probably sat in the dressing room at the end and thought I’ve had a good game today I’ve passed it to my own players a couple of time sideways.
‘I just think we see this week in week out. He’s got a lack of discipline. We see this for Arsenal week in week out. He’s just not my type of player.
‘He cost his team the goal because Forsberg comes inside and he just lets his waltz across him. He’s a holding midfield player? He’s fake.’
Arsenal fans will hope working under the more strict and organised Unai Emery can have a positive effect on Xhaka’s development next season, but many will also likely have given up on him by now as the club are also linked with new signings in midfield.
The Daily Mail have linked the Gunners with an interest in Sevilla star Steven N’Zonzi, while Ever Banega has also emerged as a reported target, according to Gazzetta dello Sport, as translated by the Metro.