Granit Xhaka continued Arsenal’s recent meteoric rise by scoring the game-winning goal against PSV Eindhoven in the Europa League
Mikel Arteta made six changes to his side that defeated Leeds in the Premier League last time out, with the Spaniard looking ahead to Sunday’s trip to Southampton. Veteran midfielder Xhaka kept his place and repaid Arteta’s faith in him by excelling in both defensive and offensive duties against a high-scoring PSV side.
Former Arsenal captain and BT Sport pundit Martin Keown praised Xhaka’s ability to adapt his game to the demands of the team. He used to play box-to-box in the beginning, but it now appears that having one sitting with another flying forward is preferable.
‘We saw tonight that he knows exactly when to take a risk and go for it.’ He’s just waiting for the right moment. However, the finish was of exceptional quality. I know it’s his first time off his right foot, but the technique was excellent.
‘He’s going to have a good time with that.’ He went through a rough patch at the club, but he’s moved on.
‘He’s sitting there thinking, ‘I’m just going to go a little bit more advanced here, we’ve got plenty of bodies behind me, and I’ll just wait in acres of space,’ and it just comes on to him. and he swings that right foot, he’s never scored with it in an Arsenal shirt before, and he’s certainly made up for it there.’
He’s just enjoying the moment and the team’s momentum. He’s crucial to Arsenal’s success right now.’
Arsenal fans would have laughed at the idea of renewing the Swiss star’s contract at the Emirates two seasons ago. Some fans are now concerned that the 30-year-old will leave at the end of the season.