Former Arsenal ace and Sky Sports pundit Charlie Nicholas has revealed that he has his doubts over whether or not Granit Xhaka will play for the Gunners again.
It comes after the controversy last weekend when Xhaka was substituted against Crystal Palace at the Emirates, and as he was met with jeers from the home faithful, the emotion of the situation got the better of him and he reacted.
As seen in the tweet below from the club, the Swiss international released a statement on Thursday to issue an apology of sort to the Arsenal fans for reacting in the way that he did and went on to explain the reasons for it.
While that perhaps goes some way to mending the relationship with some fans who were not impressed with his actions last weekend, it arguably doesn’t come across as a full apology as he still sounds emotional about the situation and rightly so when considering the abuse he details aimed at his family.
With that in mind, Nicholas has major doubts over Xhaka’s future at Arsenal as he believes that he won’t feature against Wolves this weekend and perhaps has even played his last game for the north London giants.
“I don’t know if he will ever play again, to be honest. I don’t see it,” he is quoted as saying by The Mirror. “If he is still angry and upset by the fans and the situation, I think he could say ‘it is time for me to move on’.
“He is 27, he has been at the club for a few years and it has not been the most successful period. There has been stress and strain and at the moment, he is a major part of that.
“I don’t think there is any chance of him playing [against Wolves]. If he does, it may be in the Europa League game next week. But I don’t see he would be that interested in playing the way he feels at the moment.”
Unai Emery has a big decision to make this weekend as it would perhaps be a huge risk to start Xhaka in another home game so soon after the storm created in the last outing.
In turn, that’s the first big call the Spanish tactician will have to make, followed by whether or not Xhaka keeps the armband moving forward and ultimately as questioned by Nicholas above, if he has a future with Arsenal and is capable of putting this whole episode behind him or instead seeks an exit for a fresh start elsewhere.
The following is a message from Granit Xhaka… pic.twitter.com/YG5lBKmQvi
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) October 31, 2019