Arsenal captain Granit Xhaka has been left out of the Gunners’ Premier League match-up against Wolves following his sensational outburst at a group of fans last weekend.
Boss Unai Emery confirmed that the decision was made so that the focus is fully on their matchup against Nuno Espirito Santo’s side.
The Swiss international had been substituted in a 2-2 draw against Crystal Palace last weekend and was subject to fans sarcastically applauding the decision and booing him whilst he walked off. With Xhaka also taking his time to go off with Arsenal needing a goal to win, fans were furious and jeered him further.
Having been one of the main scapegoats for the Gunners’ recent poor form, the captain reacted angrily throwing the captain’s armband off and swearing at the fans. He also cupped his ears and goaded the Gunners supporters.
As he walked off the pitch, Xhaka proceeded to quickly take his Arsenal jersey off before walking into dressing room with frustration.
Fans of the club have called for Xhaka to be stripped of the captaincy and want him out of the club following his outburst and recent sub-par performances.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is the bookies’ favourite to replace the midfielder as captain with his odds set at 5/6.
Both David Luiz and Alexandre Lacazette are also said to be in the running with their odds of being Arsenal captain 7/1 and 8/1 respectively.
Meanwhile, Xhaka is 7/4 to keep his captaincy, which he attained following a dressing room vote and the go-ahead from manager Unai Emery.
The enigmatic deep-lying playmaker did release a statement on his outburst via Arsenal’s social media accounts in a bid to explain his actions.
He stated that he loves the club and has and always will give a 100% on and off the pitch. Xhaka also highlighted that the abuse he has received on and off the pitch has troubled him over the last few months and the incident against the Eagles was the boiling point.
The Arsenal faithful have somewhat accepted the statement but wished it was an apology that came sooner as it was only released on Thursday night, four days after the incident.
Xhaka also missed Arsenal’s thrilling penalty shoot-out loss to Liverpool in the Carabao Cup midweek with Emery opting to not include the midfielder in the squad to ease the tense situation.
The Spanish coach will be hoping that the situation does not affect the players come the weekend as they need a win to ease the pressure of themselves having come under scrutiny over the past few weeks for their lacklustre performances.