Arsenal fans have been lauding Granit Xhaka after the midfielder’s performance as a stand-in centre-half for the Gunners in their 2-2 draw away to Chelsea.
The Swiss ace was switched to the centre-half after David Luiz saw red when Shkodran Mustafi attempted a back pass which fell short, allowing Tammy Abraham to run through on goal to eventually be brought down by the Brazilian (via BBC). Indeed, Xhaka was seemingly asked to act as a replacement for the 32-year-old and he put in a valiant performance at the heart of the Gunners defence.
He made the joint-third most tackles (2) and the second-most clearances (6) as he led by example in what was an enthralling encounter between the two sides (via WhoScored). Praise from supporters comes just a few months after the former captain was booed off by his own support following a clash during the draw against Crystal Palace.
Fans were left lavishing the Switzerland international with praise as they took to Twitter to react to his performance. Here is a selection of tweets from the north London faithful:
Massive credit to Granit Xhaka tonight. Forced to play at centre back for the best part of 70 minutes cause of Mustafi and Luiz’s antics.
— Gunners.com (@Gunnersc0m) January 21, 2020
Fair play to Xhaka. He looked as if he was destined to leave the club, but put his head down and has been playing well for the past month or so. Was excellent at CB today. There is no denying he is an important player in team. pic.twitter.com/OBk5AI7tUz
— P™ (@SemperFiArsenal) January 21, 2020
Xhaka and Martinelli 2 best players for me tonight. Martinelli’s workrate is unmatched, scored a very important goal and kept his composure when it mattered most.
Xhaka perfect performance when called upon at centre back, a very hardworking performance. Deserved the point👏🔴⚪
— Gally ™ (@AFCGally) January 21, 2020
Shoutout to Granit Xhaka for playing at CB for a team with 10 men for most of the match and not falling apart. Great effort from him today.
— Dan Critchlow (@afcDW) January 21, 2020
Granit Xhaka v Chelsea (A):
•Deployed to CB after the red card
•6 Long Balls
•1 Blocked Shot
What a performance all around considering the circumstances by the team. Huge point in the end 🔥 pic.twitter.com/s9WXJrmfs4
— ً (@afcprimm) January 21, 2020
Xhaka as a centre back appreciation tweet. What a class performance after Luiz got sent off. He’s been superb since Arteta arrived
— Aubazettes (@Aubazettes) January 21, 2020
Arsenal fans, what did you make of Xhaka’s performance? Join the discussion below!
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