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From outcast to integral player: How Xhaka turned things around under Emery

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Though many Arsenal fans won’t like to hear this, the bitter truth is that Switzerland international Granit Xhaka is one of the players Unai Emery can’t do without.

The player joined the Gunners from Borussia Monchengladbach two years ago and was immediately integrated into the first XI by the then manager Arsene Wenger.

As much as Xhaka’s displays under Wenger was marred with so many errors that often led to goals, he was loved by the Frenchman due to his high work rate and ability to make some important interceptions.

Contrary to the love he got from Wenger, the Gunners’  faithfuls often criticize him and call for his contract termination due to his constant erroneous performances.

The 23-year-old midfielder feels rejected by the Gunners’ fans and he reportedly pushed for a transfer out of the team. After a heart-to-heart talk with Wenger, he rescinded his decision to force a move out of the Emirates stadium.

He decided to stay with the North London club and convince the fans of his qualities and ability to make things work out for the team at the middle of the pitch.

Xhaka’s resurgence

Xhaka upped his game and he has been a mainstay in the team despite the change of manager. Since February 2017, the player had never missed any Premier League game until Wednesday’s 2-2 draw against Arsenal.

His performances obviously improved but his unwanted trait of being an error-prone midfielder still remain his greatest problem.

Despite all of his efforts to win fans’ affection, Xhaka failed to achieve his mission throughout Wenger’s regime.

Since Unai Emery began his reign at the North London club, there have been tremendous improvements in the player’s overall display and confidence level.

Xhaka now plays with lots of conviction and confidence, unlike the usual Xhaka who is known for making regular errors.

The Gunners’ supporters, who have largely been hostile towards Xhaka, are beginning to fall in love with his fine display and leadership trait.

Xhaka has developed a solid partnership with Lucas Torreira at the centre of the pitch. The wonderful Uruguayan international often provides shield for the back four so as to give the Swiss the opportunity to move the ball up to the striking position.

Xhaka’s ability to create space for himself and his teammates have drastically improved since Emery was hired as Wenger’s successor.

The player now play with ease and determination to see that his team emerge with three points by the end of every game.

He was unavoidably missed in Arsenal’s 2-2 draw against Manchester United and it won’t be out of place to say that his absence was felt throughout the encounter.

Thanks to Emery, Xhaka who was rejected by Arsenal fans is far becoming a great and idolized player among the Emirates’ faithfuls.

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Arsenal

Perfect match! This youngster is the best man to replace Danny Welbeck

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Danny Welbeck

Arsenal manager Unai Emery is reportedly in search of Danny Welbeck’s replacement as the England international won’t be in action for the rest of the campaign as a result of the injury.

The Spanish manager has been linked with some top players and reporters are claiming the former Sevilla boss is more than willing to spend big in the upcoming transfer market.

Welbeck’s replacement is right at Emery’s fingertips!

Taking a second look at Arsenal’s 1-0 victory over Qarabag on Thursday, there, was a surprise name in Emery’s starting XI — Bukayo Saka.

Bukayo Saka, 17, is one of the breakthrough stars from the Hale End Academy since Emery took over the helm of affairs at Emirates stadium.

The youngster first got his chance with the first-team squad three weeks ago in a Europa League game against Vorskla.

Saka didn’t just make the substitute bench, he made his first-team debut when he was brought into play by Emery in the later part of the encounter.

Having qualified to the next round of the competition alongside the fact that Premier League is getting tougher and busier, Emery rested most of his key players while he gave academy opportunity to make name for themselves.

Bukayo Saka, who has been awesome with the club’s U23 side, made his full debut as he started from the left wing of attack.

Saka’s magical display at the flank was nothing but a confirmation of his readiness to serve as Welbeck’s replacement for the rest of the season.

His dribbling ability, directness, eye for goals, long-range shots and above all his abilities to retain the ball from opponents makes him an upgrade to his compatriot.

The youngster completed eight dribbles more than anyone on the pitch. He had three shots on target. He wasn’t dispossessed by opponents throughout the clash — an impressive stat you can’t get from Danny Welbeck.

Though Saka look a bit young to break into Emery’s first eleven, it won’t be out of place if the former PSG manager gives the youngster some minutes in the Premier League and see how he performed.

Bukayo Saka, a naturally left-footed player and a pacy winger, has come at the right time. It’s left to Unai Emery to do the needful by integrating him into his first-team.

In Saka, there is a great player and a deadly winger. There’s no need spending on any striker in the upcoming transfer period.

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Arsenal to finally push for sale of highly rated star

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mesut ozil alexis sanchez

Emerging reports allege that the North London side Arsenal have already concluded to let under-performing German international Mesut Ozil leave the Emirates Stadium as soon as any serious offer arises.

With the winter transfer window set to reopen in the coming weeks, the reports mean that the former Real Madrid could part ways with the Gunners team as he is already being linked to a number of clubs.

The reason for the Gunners resolve to have him sold is not different from the obvious reason of poor performance which seems to be giving manager Unai Emery some concerns.

Mesut Ozil remains one of the highest players in the club with about £350,000-a-week offer but suggestions are that he has not paid his money with his performance and needs to step out.

Speculations are that he now has a sour relationship with manager Unai Emery after he was left out of the big clashes against Tottenham and Manchester United with insinuations that he cannot be trusted.

However, the 30-year-old has been linked with a move to the Italian Serie A outfit Inter Milan and that could be his destination with the club reported to be preparing a bid ahead of the winter window.

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Arsenal in touch to sign with highly rated youngster

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North London side Arsenal are reportedly in touch with RB Salzburg young attacking midfielder Hannes Wolf in a bid to secure his services in January when the winter transfer window reopens.

Reports according to Daily Mirror, the Gunners will have to battle their North London rivals Tottenham as well as other English Premier League sides like Southampton and Everton for the signature of the 19-year-old.

Hannes Wolf has been impressive for his side which makes pundits compare him with Christian Eriksen because of the quality of his play and similarities with the Tottenham star.

The young lad was a major part of the Salzburg team that delivered the UEFA Youth League to the club in 2017 as he netted a total of seven goals in all the games.

The UEFA Youth League success handed him the ticket of playing with the senior team and that has also been a success with his impressive performance last season.

With the 45 games under his belt, he had scored 12 goals and seven assists with his side that won the Australian top flight last season.

There is no doubt that Hannes Wolf will be a good addition to the Unai Emery team and could be the replacement for departing Aaron Ramsey.

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Arsenal

Arsenal scouting report positive on South American playmaker

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Arsenal scout reported to have returned with positives on Botafogo playmaker Matheus Fernandes which has given the club the go-ahead to bid on him as early as in the winter transfer window.

Reports according to Calciomercato claim that the London side have now joined the host of clubs that are lined up for his signature after being convinced of his ability and quality.

The Brazilian has impressed this season for his side in the defence and he is also believed to be perfect as a central midfielder and would fit into the Unai Emery team.

However, Arsenal are faced with competition for Matheus Fernandes from an unnamed club from the German Bundesliga, Italian Serie, A outfit Genoa and Spanish La Liga outfit Villarreal.

The North London side are therefore in the danger of missing Matheus Fernandes as he might be snapped up by other clubs who are believed to be ambitious.

Gunners boss Unai Emery has also hinted that he would have an addition in the defence which makes additions in the midfield as well as in the attack a lesser priority.

Arsenal have the ambition to qualify in the Champions League next season and they are currently sixth in the Premier League table.

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Arsenal sensation gets Cristiano Ronaldo comparison

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Cristiano Ronaldo

North London Arsenal youngster Bukayo Saka has been compared t Italian Serie A giants Juventus star Cristiano Ronaldo after his impressive performance in Gunners 1-0 win over Qarabag in the European League on Thursday night

Bukayo Saka made his home debut for the North London side in the game but his performance has earned him the comparison of five-time Ballon d’Or winner.

This is the opinion of former Manchester United and Liverpool striker Michael Owen who stated that Bukayo Saka has got a great future ahead of him at the Emirates Stadium.

Owen stated that the player proved great quality as well as handling the ball perfectly on the pitch. He added that Bukayo Saka looked nervous at the beginning of the game but grew to blend and show what he is made of.

He stressed that some of the skills exhibited by the Nigerian born remind him of Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo despite being unlucky to have missed a goal in the game.

Meanwhile, manager Unai Emery showered praise on the player stating that Bukayo Saka has shown that he deserves more having made good use of the opportunity handed him.

The Arsenal side are tipped to have a great future with the number of talents in their youth ranks.

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