The Legend of Arsenal: Xhaka's Disdain


If you follow the English Premier League, then you were probably a witness to the unfortunate events that occurred at the Arsenal vs Crystal Palace match on Sunday (no we are not talking about the score).

After a failed attempt to shut down a cross from Crystal Palace's Wilfred Zaha, that cross led to a headed effort by Jordan Ayew, which tied the game. A few moments later Granit Xhaka, saw his number by the touchline from the fourth official. His day was up and by the fans reaction they were pleased in the worst way possible. 

The fans reaction were to jeer and whistle as he slowly jogged off the pitch until that jog turned into a sluggish traipse to touch. His demeanor clearly showed he was displeased as he tossed the captains armband towards Aubameyang's direction. The jeers got louder and more prominent accompanied with boos as he muttered to himself. He then cupped his ear to the crowd and with undeniable ease from anyone who was 20 meters from him (or watching at home) could see him mouth "f*** off" to the crowd. Of course the fans response was of utter abhorrence as they watched Xhaka slap Emery's hand away and continue down the tunnel to the dressing room whilst removing his Arsenal jersey.

After the incident speculation about Xhaka's and Emery's, future at the Emirates have been in question. Since the start of both of their careers they have always been faced with a level of adversity. When you are brought onto Arsenal, you are supposed to make a positive impact on the club. If that does not happen you must go your separate way which means that there is very little room for error. While talks remain consistent across the board about Arsenal, on a collision course for turmoil all over the web, the question of Ozil's consistent absence in a squad devoid of creativity and the need for Arsenal, to rid themselves of the two figures under fire, we find ourselves asking a different question. How can Xhaka and Emery, bounce back?

This is obviously a low in both of their careers. Due to how tied their two fates are now with Emery's decision to make the Swiss international primary Captain (supposedly there are 5 captains?) and his fairly blatant should we say trust to the player, it's hard not to see both getting the boot if it comes to that. This also means that they are in the best position to help each other out and prove the haters wrong. You may be asking, "How is this possible?" We believe the fix is fairly simple. 

For Emery:

1. Listen to the fans. Hear out the people who have been faithfully watching these games week in and week out. The fans are your 12th man on the pitch. They can and will heckle the crap out of an opponent rather than their own if they are kept happy. Against Crystal Palace, Emery, made a couple of the changes fans wanted to see. It's a start BUT he needs to figure out how to use them.

2. Get the tactics right. A lot about football isn't just tactful it's cosmetic as well and that's something that Wenger, did well and pretty effectively. No need to do like Wenger, but the football of Arsenal these days is absolutely abysmal. One thing Wenger's Arsenal had was an identity. Emery needs to figure out this Club's identity (passing out of the back aint it) in order for the team to succeed.

3. Player Management. It's not only about playing the right players but it's also about when to play them. A number of times this season we witnessed substitutions that made no sense or did little to nothing to change the game. The better he understands his players the better off Arsenal will be.

Bonus: Get PEPE going! He's on the right track. Everyone sees his worth. If Emery, needs an easy way to save face getting that man scoring goals and linking with Aubameyang and Lacazette, every weekend will pay him dividends(thankfully his light is starting to show now it needs to brighten).    

 

For Xhaka:

1. Apologize. Getting booed by your own supporters is one of the most terrible experiences a footballer can go through and no fan could comprehend that no matter what they say. The most disgusting things appear online and on social media and that's why a lot of athlete's tend to stay off it for huge amounts of time. But one thing you cannot do just like at a typical retail job is anger the customers. Unfortunately Xhaka, dealt with all three of those scenarios and only one of those memories will be etched in everyone's minds. It'd be best to try to nip it in the bud early. You still have to play for this team at the end of the day. It's your job and that means you will see those fans again. Let them know that you did wrong, you want to make amends and get on with your career. Let them know you're committed to being a better you.

2. Take a break. The winter break couldn't come quick enough for him. Most fans haven't noticed but he's played a lot of football for the first half of the season between Premier League, Europa, Cup Play as well as International. He could probably use a break (definitely Emery's fault). The winter holidays can be a great chance for him to spend time completely away from the game heck keep him off against Liverpool, on Wednesday, for the League Cup. Step away from the game for a bit and spend time with your wife and newborn. His mental has taken a beating and that's something everyone can admit to.

3. Details to Footballing Basics: This is something that has eluded him pretty much since he's played for Arsenal. When to stay on his feet, to go in for a tackle, or to plainly shut down an opponent. These are the little things he needs to make his game complete and this is us only mentioning the defensive side of his game. He lacks some the most basic decision making skills that would make him a solid player rather than one prone to make mistakes. He should take a look at players that play a similar role to his with similar attributes. For us Jordan Henderson and James Milner (a guy pushing closer to 40), come to mind. None of them are either quick or technical but they play the game with grit. They keep their game simple by doing the basics right and giving 100% on the defensive side of the ball and are rewarded because of it. We truly believe Xhaka, can be that player and we've seen flashes of it in the past. Just put a body on the guy and your legend with Arsenal, could be rectified. 

Let's hope both guys turn it around before this season gets any uglier.


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