GoonerNews

Arsenal News

Live Arsenal News

Arsenal latest news

Arsenal News & Transfers
As featured on NewsNow: Arsenal newsArsenal News 24/7

Arsenal News, Only Arsenal, Blogs, Transfer News

Archives

May 2022
M T W T F S S
 1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
3031  
Arsenal News
The Soccerlinks Hit List
May 2022
M T W T F S S
 1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
3031  

Link Refer

Archives

e-soccer
Premier League Betting and Odds

Xhaka, and how a media/fan conspiracy nearly lost Arsenal an invaluable player

By Sir Hardly Anyone

In an article for The Players’ Tribune, Xhaka described the “pure hatred” he received from “supporters” when he was booed in the home game against Crystal Palace. “When I close my eyes now, I can still see their faces,” Xhaka is quoted as saying, in that article.

And although it may be much less of the case now than it was before, there are still some people who identify as Arsenal fans who think he should not be in the team, and should never have been in the team.

Indeed Sky Sports have been at the forefront of Xhaka hatred, with headlines such as Arsenal must move on ‘liability’ Granit Xhaka to continue progress under Mikel Arteta, says Jamie Carragher.”

The raging hatred within articles such as that, backed up by nothing other than personal animosity, jealousy and a desire to make a headline, is of course what football journalism in England is all about.  Personal opinion, self-aggrandisement, agenda following and a generalised loathing of foreigners unless they play for your favourite club, is the name of the game.

A simple question however always remains.  If he is that awful, why have professional managers who have won trophies endlessly pick him, while ex-players whose only task is to pontificate on TV, and who have never managed, knock him ceaselessly?

And really that is an interesting mix.   Wenger, Emery and Arteta all wanted him in their team.

Xhaka was signed in May 2016 by Arsene Wenger for £35m.  Since then through three managers (four if we count Freddy) he has always been selected when available – knocking up anything between 29 and 37 league starts a season.

Season Competiton Games Goals Assists Yel Pass success %
2021/2022 League Cup 2(1) 92.2
2021/2022 Premier League 22 1 2 8 87
2020/2021 Premier League 29(2) 1 2 7 90.2
2020/2021 Europa League 10 1 89
2019/2020 Premier League 30(1) 1 2 10 88.1
2019/2020 Europa League 4 2 87.7
2018/2019 Premier League 29 4 2 10 89.5
2018/2019 Europa League 9 3 2 86.2
2017/2018 Europa League 5(1) 1 1 91.2
2017/2018 Premier League 37(1) 1 7 10 86.9
2016/2017 Champ League 5(2) 1 3 88.6
2016/2017 Premier League 28(4) 2 2 5 89.5

Now I want to make it clear that I am very aware of the enormous amount of work that Carragher does for the most excellent of causes.  23 Foundation, Soccer Aid, Kingsway House, Cotton Street Project… all that is utterly fantastic and represents infinitely more for society and individuals than I have ever been able to do.

But why does he taint that superb work with these wild and whacky statements, the sole purpose of which seems to be to encourage people who identify as Arsenal supporters, to speak against the club, its players and its managers?

And why must he carry on spouting his nonsense, in what must be the fulsome knowledge that Arsene Wenger, Unai Emery and Mikel Arteta, all quality managers, trusted Xhaka entirely?

Do these pundits really think that the only players who we should support are Englishmen who never make mistakes?   Do they believe that teams can exist in the Premier League without a serious defensive midfielder whose job it is to break up attacks, and thus constantly be at the risk of yellow cards?

Have they not even pondered the possibility that Wenger, Emery and Arteta were right and these men who are just paid to put out personal opinion, backed up by no statistics or other broad evidence, are wrong?

And it is not just as if Xhaka only has one game to play.  Under the manager’s instructions, he played in a slightly different position to accommodate Thomas Partey, and without Partey playing, Xhaka moves again.  It’s not mentioned that often in the media, but it is there for those who want to watch.  Likewise he adjusts his game when required to, to cover for Tierney.

Then again, now that Mohamed Elneny has suddenly come in from the cold this requires Xhaka to play a slightly different game and of course that led to his ability to get a goal.  After that, seeing how disorientated and down the Manchester United players were, he changed position again, playing on the right for a while, much to the dismay of the disorientated opposition. 

Such was the media fuss made about Xhaka a couple of years back he is not the captain now, but that hardly seems to matter.  In fact, having Odegaard as the captain works slightly better as it means he has the task of running over to the manager when there is a pause in play to get the latest instructions.  If Odegaard is late back to his position that matters far less than if Xhaka were to be late back.  The media would go bonkers about his being in the wrong place as the opposition attacked.

It is impossible to know when the media will launch their next attack on Xhaka, but we can expect one soon.  It is cheap journalism, and that’s what football reporting in this country is.

Thankfully, Xhaka ultimately had the strength to see those morons off.

32 comments to Xhaka, and how a media/fan conspiracy nearly lost Arsenal an invaluable player

  • Troy Joyner

    Very well stated, I too have always wondered why Xhaka gets so much aimed at him based on the thankless job he does for the team, and always without question. We are a much better team when he plays.

  • porter

    “” Do they believe that teams can exist in the Premier League without a serious defensive midfielder whose job it is to break up attacks, and thus constantly be at the risk of yellow cards? “”

    And thereby hangs the problem , as proven against United in particular Xhaka is not a defensive midfielder . His main assets are based in his passing ability preferably in the space immediately behind the attacking force.

    As a defensive player he gets his cards because he gets caught on the wrong side of quicker players , tackles late and often out of position and is too slow to turn recover and ends up grabbing at shirts or dives in and fouls his man.

    When he plays as a withdrawn playmaker as he does for his country he is free to play his proper game and is much more useful for the team.

    The deficiencies in our squad over time has forced him not to be able to play his natural game and it has cost him.

  • bushido

    @porter – that’s right, Granit is a CM not a CDM and some Arsenal fans and supporters are forgetting that facts even with their so call proven stats or whatever. that’s why after Mikel got Granit playing his natural game we see massive difference in his overall performance game after game compare to when he’s playing under previous predecessors. lastly, can you imagine if Granit make similar challenge that Bruno does against Nuno. commentators/pundits tone will change when they talk about that, opposition fans will go crazy, not to mention opposition players and sometime their managers will lose their heads before they start to antagonize the referee and acting like Granit just shoot someone

  • Nitram

    bushido

    “….that’s right, Granit is a CM not a CDM and some Arsenal fans and supporters are forgetting that facts even with their so call proven stats or whatever”.

    And what facts are they? I don’t see you bringing any facts here at all. Maybe you can show me the ‘facts’ to which you refer?

    And why are they ‘so called stats’? You do know stats ARE facts don’t you? We don’t make them up. Just because you don’t like what they tell you, doesn’t make them ‘So Called’ stats. They are stats.

    Anyway, at the risk of upsetting you yet again, I’m going to look at some more stats, just to see if your statement above, as well as your other statement….

    “that’s why after Mikel got Granit playing his natural game we see massive difference in his overall performance game after game compare to when he’s playing under previous predecessors.”

    …have any basis in reality, or are in fact just your opinion.

    Season-Manager-Appearances-Goals-Assists-Tackles-Tackle success rate.

    2016-17 Wenger 32 – 2 – 2 – 77 – 71%
    2017-18 Wenger 38 – 1 – 7 – 78 – 73%

    Average Wenger 35 – 1.5 – 4.5 – 77.5 – 72%

    2018-19 Emery 29 – 4 – 2 – 52 – 56%

    2019-20 Arteta 31 – 1 – 2 – 45 – 56%
    2020-21 Arteta 31 – 1 – 2 – 50 – 52%
    2021-22 Arteta 22 – 1 – 2 – 27 – 59%

    Average Arteta 28 – 1 – 2 – 41 – 56%

    So what have each manager got out of Xhaka? Lets work from left to right.

    Appearances:

    Well as we can see they all play him pretty much whenever they can, but we knew that anyway.

    Goals:

    1st Emery with 4 per season
    2nd Wenger with 1.5 per season
    3rd Arteta with 1 per season

    Assists:

    1st Wenger with 4.5 per season
    2nd= Emery with 2 per season
    2nd= Emery with 2 per season

    So Emery got the most goals out of Xhaka, Wenger the most assist and Arteta the least in both. Either way, unless I’m missing something, neither of those sets of statistics, goals or assists, suggest to me that Xhaka is in any way shape or form a creative midfielder. So if he’s not a creative midfielder he must be a defensive midfielder, no? Unless of course there’s another type of midfielder that I’ve somehow missed ?

    So, as a defensive midfielder, who got/gets the best out of him?

    Tackles:

    1st Wenger with 77.5 per season
    2nd Emery with 52 per season
    3rd Arteta with 41 per season

    Tackle success rate:

    1st Wenger with 72% per season
    2nd= Emery with 56% per season
    2nd= Arteta with 56% per season

    Those statistics confirm that Xhaka clearly is a defensive midfielder.

    They also show that it was Wenger that got the best out of Xhaka in that regard. The only parameter Wenger didn’t get the best out of Xhaka in was goals scored. Emery came out on top in that respect.

    As much as I like Arteta, the truth is he has not got the best out of Xhaka in any aspects of his game at all, so where you get this ‘massive difference’ notion from I don’t know? Maybe you can show me that as well, rather than just giving me your opinion?

    So to conclude, whether you like it or not, both your claims:

    1) That Xhaka is not a CDM, and

    2) After Mikel got Granit playing his natural game we see a massive difference in his overall performance, game after game, compared to when he’s playing under previous predecessors.

    Are clearly not true.

    Unless you can show me otherwise of course.

  • porter

    Nitram over complicating things ,
    As I said before Xhaka is not a defensive midfielder , he is a fairly useful player in a more advanced position.
    No amount of spread sheets will tell me different , at no point did I infer that he was a play maker merely that he was better played as a link to the forward players allowing more suitable players to do the defensive duties.
    Although he has been played in that position does not mean that it’s where he plays best.

  • Carragher’s only function in life is to act as the mouthpiece of the PL/Liverpool media organisation. As such, he is paid to de-stabilise competing clubs. If Carragher was a serious pundit, he would comment on the inequitable treatment of those competing clubs by the PGMOL Stasi.

    He keeps quiet, in the pursuit of money.

  • Steve Vallins

    @ Nitram
    Have a read of “ She Wore A Yellow Ribbon “ another view of how someone thinks Granite Xhaka plays slightly further forward , hence the mistakes he can make are say on the halfway line with the opposition regaining the ball further away from our goal .
    Early in MA’s reign we had Mustifa , Luis , and Sokratis look at the defence now plus Partey , which if mistakes are made are not so costly .

  • Nitram

    Porter

    “at no point did I infer that he was a play maker”

    At no point did I say you did. My post was not even addressed to you.

    “As I said before Xhaka is not a defensive midfielder”

    You can say it as often as you like, it makes no difference, it is still just your opinion, no more, no less. My opinion is he is.

    “He is a fairly useful player in a more advanced position”.

    He may well be, but again that is still just your opinion, no more, no less. My opinion is he is a fairly useful player in a withdrawn position.

    But there in a nutshell is the problem I mentioned before porter. You think this, I think that, he thinks the other, and round and round it goes, it gets us nowhere.

    So how do we move on from ‘yes he is’, ‘no he isn’t’?

    That’s right, you back up your ‘opinion’ with some statistics, or facts. That’s how debate works. That’s how a disagreement is progressed.

    But you don’t like doing that do you porter because apparently, despite that being the bedrock of debate for millennia, you say:

    “No amount of spread sheets (which is basically the presentation of statistics, or facts) will tell me different”

    Well of course they wont porter, because just like bushido, you seem to think your opinion is all that matters. I mean, you’re hardly going to let a few statistics get in the way are you?

    As I said to Tony the other day, trying to debate with people that put their opinion above all else, including facts, is utterly pointless.

    But hey, I try.

  • Mikey

    My personal opinion is that; Xhaka is a very good and versatile player; Carragher has never proved himself as a coach so is clearly not qualified to make categorical statements; everyone is welcome to an unsubstantiated opinion….provided they don’t ignore facts and believe their opinion is unquestionable.

    But that’s just my opinion….except the bit about Carragher!

  • Nitram

    Seeing as following the departure of Wenger there was quite a drop in both the amount of tackles made by Xhaka, as well as the % of tackles he won, I thought I’d see if reigning back on his tackling has improved his disciplinary record at all.

    These are his basic games/tackle/cards stats:

    16/17 W: A card every 6.4 games
    17/18 W: A card every 3.8 games

    Average: A card every 4.5 games

    18/19 E: A card every 2.9 games

    19/20 A: A card every 3.1 games
    20/21 A: A card every 4.4 games
    21/22 A: A card every 2.7 games

    Average: A card every 3.3 games

    So despite making about 20% more tackles in his early career, he on average, went more games between cards than at any other time in his career. But it is a bit up and down, it has to be said.

    What did surprise me was that his first season was his best, by quite some distance actually, but alas it didn’t last. His second season was lot worse, though nowhere near his worst. That honour goes to Emery under whom he received a card every 2.9 games. Twice as bad as that first season.

    But as you will see, this season could run that record close.

    It’s a bit tricky to get a handle on whats happening under Arteta.

    On average Xhaka was making 2.2 tackles per match in his first 2 seasons. Under Arteta he is making 1.45 tackles per game, a drop of 25%, which fits perfectly with the change of tactics that Tony has often talked about.

    But has his disciplinary record improved along with this drop in tackles?

    The answer is no. In fact, it’s got worse. Instead of a card every 4.5 games, he now on average, gets a card every 3.3 games under Arteta.

    But here’s the thing, even within Artetas reign it has fluctuated drastically.

    In his first season he played 31 games, made 45 tackles, and was carded every 3.1 games.

    In Artetas second season, the season when the overall tackles dropped dramatically, Xhaka again played 31 matches but actually increased his tackles to 50, but oddly was only booked every 4.4 games, his second best season. So it seems there’s no relationship between the amount of tackles he makes and the amount of cards he receives.

    So why was this? His tackle success rate was actually slightly worse, but negligible really, so it seems to have nothing to do with that.

    Was it, where he was playing? Who he was playing with? How the team was playing? I don’t know, but it’s a dramatic change.

    Then we have this season. Another season where our overall tackle rate has remained relatively low. Xhaka has followed this trend dropping from 1.45 tackles per game in Artetas first 2 seasons to 1.2 tackles per game this.

    But his card rate has rocketed to a card every 2.7 games, his worst season ever. Again suggesting there is absolutely no link between the amount of tackles he makes and the amount of cards he gets.

    In Wengers era he was booked every 10 tackles.

    In Artetas first 2 seasons every 5.5.

    Xhaka is currently being carded every 3.3 tackles.

    This current rate is simply ridiculous.

    Now I cant be arsed to search every midfielder in the country but I just plucked one out of the air to make a comparison and went for Fabinho at Liverpool.

    His Liverpool career stats are:

    Appearances 112
    Tackles 220
    Tackle success 55%
    Yellows 24

    A card every 4.5 games (Xhaka currently every 2.7)
    A card every 9 tackles (Xhaka currently every 3.3)

    That is mad.

    A lot of stats I know, some will find them interesting, telling, insightful, some wont. Don’t read them then.

    In the final analysis I’m not sure what they tell us, apart from one thing, and that is that Xhaka is harshly treated, and far from getting any better, it just seems to be getting worse.

    NB

    Sorry for any mistakes, please just point them out.

  • Eqst

    Nitram you conveniently picked stats that support your argument while ignoring other spectrum of stats that put your arguments into doubts for your information tackles are not the only indicators of defensive actions we have interceptions , duels( arial and ground), blocks possession recovery and on the attacking side you ignored trival stats like pass to the final third completed passes XG, shot creating actions chances created etc. While you’re trying to win an argument please present a balanced stat not skewed one.

  • Nitram

    Hers another comparison:

    KANTE

    Appearances = 217
    Tackles = 662
    % success = 62%
    Yellows = 30

    A card every 7.2 matches (Xhaka currently every 2.7)
    A card every 22 tackles (Xhaka currently every 3.3)

    If the Fabinho was mad then that is insane.

    Here’s the thing. Kante makes on average of 3 tackles per match. Xhaka makes 1.2 tackles per match.

    If Xhaka made the amount of tackles Kante does, at the rate he gets carded, he would receive a yellow card every single match.

    No wonder he, and Arsenal, have had to adapt the way they play.

  • Nitram

    Because those Kante statistics blew my mind I thought I’d have a look a little closer, specifically at the relationship between games played, fouls and cards, to see how they played out. This is how they look.

    Note: For cards Yellow = 1 Red = 2

    XHAKA

    App = 183
    Fouls = 258
    Cards = 58

    Fouls per match = 1.44
    A card every 4.4 fouls

    KANTE

    App = 217
    Fouls = 265
    Cards = 30

    Fouls per match = 1.22
    A card every 9.8 fouls

    So what can we see ? Well first of all with 1.44 compared to 1.22 fouls per game each respectively there is very little to choose between them on that front.

    But now we come to how they are dealt with.

    Kante gets a card every 9.8 fouls. Xhaka gets a card every 4.4 fouls. Xhaka gets treated over twice as harshly as Kante. Are we really to believe that Xhakas fouls are twice as bad as Kantes?

    Note: Kante has not received a single red card. Xhaka has received 4.

    Honestly these statistics are shocking.

  • Eqst – I disagree with your point. It seems to me that if you feel an argument is statistically invalid you should present stats to show this is the case. Simply listing a load of statistics, saying “you should look at these” is not a refutation at all. When my stats on tackles, fouls and cards were challenged, the correspondent wrote and said everyone knew that the number of tackles and the number of fouls were not linked because it was the severity of the foul that was the issue. He provided no evidence, and I was able to show he was totally wrong. But again that is not a case of simply listing loads of different data.
    If your approach were to be considered valid then any group of statistics could be challenged like this. I might say that burning fossil fuels increases global warming and you could reply “you haven’t taken into account the eating of cheese in Rumania”. That is clearly nonsense, but the same point applies. If you want to challenge stats you need to give some evidence as to why these new stats should be taken into account, otherwise the debate goes nowhere.

  • Nitram

    Eqst

    It would help if you firstly explained the point you are trying to make, and secondly supported it with evidence, or statistics.

    As it is, you haven’t refuted a single statistic I have provided. All you’ve done is accuse me of selecting statistics to suit my argument, without providing a single one to support yours.

    A bit hypocritical don’t you think ?

    So rather than just criticising me, why not try putting your case, support it with evidence, and we’ll go from their.

  • Nitram

    Eqst

    In the interests of fair play I thought I’d do exactly what you asked.

    I couldn’t be asked to reproduce every single statistic relating to Xhaka. Rather I’m showing 5 different parameters that you mentioned, Interceptions, Blocks, Duels won, Recoveries, and Clearances, and showing the Average Per Match relating to each parameter during each managers tenures.

    I’ve also put 1st, 2nd or 3rd by each stat to show how well he performed under each manager.

    Av/per/match for Interceptions-Blocks-Duels won-Recoveries-Clearances

    Wenger………..:1.07(2nd) – 0.37(1st) – 4.70(2nd) – 6.80(2nd) – 1.38(2nd)

    Emery…………:1.24(1st) – 0.30(2nd) – 5.50(1st) – 7.10(1st) – 1.80(1st)

    Arteta………..:0.76(3rd) – 0.26(3rd) – 4.34(3rd) – 6.28(3rd) – 1.35(3rd)

    Now I don’t know what you thought I was trying to show but it was fundamentally 2 things. I was trying to show that these 2 statements were simply not true:

    “Granit is a CM not a CDM and some Arsenal fans and supporters are forgetting that facts even with their so call proven stats or whatever”.

    Which I feel the stats show beyond any doubt clearly isn’t true. Xhaka is without doubt a defensive midfielder, first and foremost. It is not of course his only skill set, but that is his primary function within the team, and has been under every manager.

    and the statement:

    “that’s why after Mikel got Granit playing his natural game we see massive difference in his overall performance game after game compare to when he’s playing under previous predecessors.”

    The inference being, without actually naming the ‘previous predecessors’, that Arteta has got more out of Xhaka ‘Game after game’ than Wenger and Emery did, which again is clearly not true.

    I showed that with my original stats, and that has been reinforced by the additional stats that you asked for.

    Arteta gets the least out of Xhaka in every single parameter.

    Point proved I think.

    Unless you have evidence to contrary of course. I’ll be waiting.

  • porter

    Are we really to believe that Xhakas fouls are twice as bad as Kantes?

    No but they are more obvious , Certain players know how to foul and come up smelling of roses . Currently we have Cedric Soares who commits fouls that don’t get penalised and rarely gets carded and previously we had Gilberto Silva .
    As I said earlier Xhaka’s problem when he is played defensively is that he gets caught wrong side of players , he turns slowly and consequencly makes obvious tug backs and slide tackles that catch players late.
    Admittedly it’s de riguer to reach for a card when it’s Xhaka but his fouling is quite clear and obvious and that’s one of the reasons that there is so much frustration surounding him.

  • Nitram

    porter.

    You keep telling yourself that.

  • Nitram

    Porter

    Have a look at this little lot.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-2-h3RCDdt8

    How some of them were not red cards is beyond me.

    Not obvious. You are a comedian.

  • porter

    Don’t worry I will , years of experiernce using eyes and feet.

  • porter

    I’m not bothered about Kante .

    Xhaka is my concern and if you read my comments you would see that my gripe with him is that I believe that he is not a defensive player . I believe that he is better played forward .

    I feel that he has been pushed into a situation that he is not suited for.

    But then that’s just my judgement from block 10.

  • Nitram

    porter

    I make a comparison between Xhaka and Kante to show how relatively harshly Xhaka is treated.

    You come here and challenge that comparison, claiming that somehow those diabolical statistics are down to the ‘obvious’ nature of Xhakas’ fouls, when compared to Kantes’.

    When I demonstrate that Kantes fouls are just as obvious as Xhakas, all of a sudden you’re no longer interested in Kante.

    Odd that.

    So now you go back to:

    “Xhaka is my concern and if you read my comments you would see that my gripe with him is that I believe that he is not a defensive player”

    I know that, as is it is with bushido, but that is just your opinions, opinions I don’t agree with.

    My opinion is that Xhaka clearly is a defensive midfielder, but unlike you I have produced statistics to back that up.

    So rather than just keep giving us your opinion again and again of what he’s NOT, why not try telling us what he IS ? Not only that but why you think that, and more importantly, produce some statistic to back yourself. It’s not difficult, as you may of noticed I do it all the time.

    Maybe you think he’s an offensive midfielder? Although I don’t think a 6 season return of 10 goals (1.66 per season) and 17 assists (2.8 per season) supports that notion at all, do you?

    Or maybe you do?

    And for the 3rd or 4th time, my other point is regarding a claim by bushido (To whom my post was addressed to, not you, but that’s another matter) that Arteta has got more out of Xhaka, ‘game after game’ than Emery or Wenger, which is clearly not true.

    So back to your claim, go on then, tell us what kind of midfielder Xhaka IS ? Tell us WHY you think that ? And most importantly show us something that supports that.

  • porter

    I refer to you the comments I made at the very beginning of this discussion
    :- Do they believe that teams can exist in the Premier League without a serious defensive midfielder whose job it is to break up attacks, and thus constantly be at the risk of yellow cards? “”

    And thereby hangs the problem , as proven against United in particular Xhaka is not a defensive midfielder . His main assets are based in his passing ability preferably in the space immediately behind the attacking force.

    As a defensive player he gets his cards because he gets caught on the wrong side of quicker players , tackles late and often out of position and is too slow to turn recover and ends up grabbing at shirts or dives in and fouls his man.

    When he plays as a withdrawn playmaker as he does for his country he is free to play his proper game and is much more useful for the team.

    It’s the last paragraph.

  • Nitram

    porter

    Every single thing is just your opinion, AGAIN.

    I really do hope you never end up in court because it will be a rude awaking when you are told that your opinion means absolutely NOTHING, because if you want to prove a point, it’s all about the evidence, and you are totally incapable of producing any.

    What’s more you don’t even seem to think you need to.

  • porter

    Yes mit’s my opinion that’s what constitutes debate.

  • bushido

    @nitram – even strikers make tackles and duels all over the pitch but that doesn’t mean that striker is a defensive midfielder plus Granit is a midfielder so of course he has to battle players all over the pitch and his stats is showing what a midfielder stats should be but he’s not a defensive/holding midfielder. when he tried to do the dirty job the managers ask him, he failed most of the time and got needlessly carded because that’s not his nature. he is a deep lying passer and a link-up player more than he’s a defensive/holding midfielder and i don’t need all that fancy manager wannabe stats to know that. if you can’t see that, then maybe we see football in different way. and for god sake, stop rambling like a senile oldman everytime you try to make a point, it make my head hurt

  • Dizbuster

    Porter and Bushido are correct – Xhaka, a player I used to like, is NOT a holding mid, he is being misplayed there. Advance him up the pitch (where he plays for his country), and reap the benefits. Keep him where he is and you can expect many more yellow and red cards. Instead of displaying a stonewall mentality, supporters like “Nitram” should focus less on reflexively defending certain players and look to the market and/or the academy to locate, obtain and develop players who will provide higher performance levels. After all, that is what perennially successful clubs do.

  • So what I don’t understand Disbuster is why, with your superior understanding – superior that is to Arteta – why you are not in football management.

  • rob25

    Cheap shot Tony, using the “why are you not in football management” line. The same could be applied to what was just discussed by yourself on Pulis and Gnarby ( not that i would disagree).
    Or any other manager criticised on this forum? Contrary to some on here, Its about opinions and debate, not an individuals interpretation of data as somehow fact?

  • And that is the problem Rob. For some people facts are known to be facts because there is data and clear evidence to support the statements as facts. There are however many people who feel that facts and opinions merge, because data always has to be interpreted.
    As is obvious I am in the former group, since for me opinions are only of use where a) there is a lack of data so the opinions allow the individual expressing the opinion to go looking for evidence to back that up, or b) the opinion is that the evidence could equally be interpreted in a new way.
    Then we have the foundation of debate.
    When all we have is opinion without data, the debate cannot be held since it is just one person’s opinion against another.

    Sorry to say I will be away from my computer this afternoon, so won’t be able to continue with any discussion, but I’ll get back to the workdesk later in the day.

  • porter

    Whether anyone knows more than Arteta is not the question . If we are to just accept he is the manager and as such he must be right then the whole process of discussion is lost.
    There are people that go to football watch the game , go to the pub and rock up home in time for the match of the day pundits to tell them what to think . Then there are others that think about what they have just witnessed .
    You said the other day that you have a fairly long trip home after the games , well so do I and in my 140 mile trip the guys in my car discuss and analyse the match and the performance of the players and with a debate in which we often disagree with each other opinions are formed and discussed.
    I believe that as players Arteta and Xhaka are quite similar , neither are great tacklers , both were / are better playing behind a mobile forward line and both are /were good at linking defence and attack and I believe that could well be Arteta’s blind spot towards Xhaka .
    The difference for me is that Xhaka is not as intelligent as Arteta and I mean that as a positional player and knowing his limitations , Xhaka gets caught out and gets booked “taking one for the team ” in modern pundit parlance . Unfortunately he does it more times than Arteta did almost twice as often.

  • porter

    And yet data is only affirmative when there is a constant or a defined pattern and football is neither of those .
    Football is subject to many variables , referee ,players , managers and their decisions or freak incidents nothing is absolute .
    Which is why opinion and theories come into the equation.

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>