Arsenal lead Chelsea and Liverpool in swoop for Xhaka


The Premier League giants Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool are in a race to secure the services of highly-rated Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Granit Xhaka. The Swiss star has attracted the attention of a number of clubs following some impressive performances in the Bundesliga this season.
According to German publication Bild, Chelsea and Liverpool are both monitoring the player’s progress and Reds’ boss Jurgen Klopp has apparently held a “meeting” with player’s representatives last month.
In a revealing interview with torabrik.de, Xhaka hinted that he would be interest in a move to the Emirates, if Arsene Wenger came calling. The 23-year-old was asked about the importance of wearing the No.34 jersey – it was his first number as Basel, and he has a tattoo on his back – and what would happen if the number was already taken.
“I would also like to wear it in the future. It was also here in Gladbach, with Amin Younes. And at Arsenal Coquelin has it. I’ve spoken with him, he would like to take another number!”
However the decision of former Basel man to choose Arsenal over Liverpool and Chelsea has it’s logic:
  • The Gunners are in title race, while the Blues and the Merseyside club are struggling this season – putting into doubt whether either side will play in the Champions League next season.
  • At the Emirates, there are several injured players (Jack Wilshere, Santi Cazorla, Francis Coquelin, Thomas Rosicky) and several under-fire midfielders (Mathieu Flamini, Mikel Arteta) that play in Xhaka’s position, so he would a great chance of starting in Wenger’s team.
  • Xhaka is very much a player suited for the Gunners’ style. His quick decision making, creativity and accurate short-passes would fit well at the club – whereas at Chelsea, there is no real philosophy at the moment.
Wenger needs him, and it’s simply as that – Xhaka would add aggression and physicality to Arsenal’s midfield. The 23-year-old is contracted to German club until 2019, but reportedly has a £22.7million release clause that could be activated in 2017 – perhaps the German club could be persuaded to do business earlier.

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