Granit Xhaka’s run as Arsenal captain is reportedly said to end following his shocking outburst in the Gunners’ 2-2 draw against Cyrstal Palace.
Unai Emery’s men were up 2-0 thanks to goals from centre-backs Sokratis and David Luiz before the Eagles equalised through a penalty from Luka Milivojevic and a header from Jordan Ayew.
However, it was Xhaka’s bizarre but somewhat understandable action that stole all the headlines from Sunday’s Premier League fixtures.
With 10 minutes in the match left to go, the Swiss international was taken off by and the Gunners’ faithful decided to boo and jeer the midfielder due to the fact he was walking off when Arsenal needed a goal to win the game.
Xhaka responded by cupping his ears and was seen swearing back to the fans before throwing the captain’s armband on the floor and quickly taking off the Arsenal jersey before walking back into the dressing room.
This action has not gone down well with Arsenal supporters for obvious reasons and questions have therefore been raised whether the enigmatic midfielder is still worthy of wearing the captain’s armband for the storied club.
Bookmakers have made Xhaka only the second favourite to captain Arsenal in their upcoming Premier League fixture against Wolves in the weekend with odds of him leading his side set at 7/4.
Odds for Arsenal’s choice for captain against Wolves
5/6- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
7/4- Granit Xhaka
7/1- David Luiz
8/1- Alexandre Lacazette
The midfielder has often been criticized for his average performances during his tenure in North London and many fans have called for him to be dropped for both his performances and outburst on Sunday.
Xhaka is currently 6/4 to play in the EFL Cup on Wednesday against Liverpool and 11/10 to be in the starting XI against Wolves.
The 27-year-old joined Arsenal back in the summer of 2016 for an incredible £31m from Bundesliga outfit Borussia Monchengladbach. In 144 appearances, he has only scored 11 and assisted 17 as usually either a central or defensive midfielder.
His statistics are not that great but fans’ biggest gripe about the midfielder is the fact his performances are mistake-laden thus often leaving Arsenal in a precarious position in defence.
Despite this, manager Unai Emery decided to opt to appoint Xhaka as Arsenal’s captain for the season, with the help of a players poll, in order to replace long-time club servants Laurent Koscielny and Aaron Ramsey. The defenders left in the summer and were the leaders of the dressing room before Xhaka took the mantel.
It is said that Emery had decided to have the players vote for who the captain should be with the top five players securing rights to the captaincy armband.
The midfielder came out on top meaning he was appointed as the club captain. The other four players who occupied the rest of the positions were Pierre-Emerick Aubamayeng, Hector Bellerin, Alexandre Lacazette and Mesut Ozil.
This was similar to last season when Emery had a five captains policy which had included both Xhaka and Ozil as well as Koscielny, Ramsey and Petr Cech who have all departed the club.
With fans calling for Xhaka to even leave the club following his outburst, it will be a surprise if he does lead the line for Arsenal again.