Arsenal face Tottenham Hotspur in the latest edition of the North London derby at Wembley on Saturday, and Gunners fans don’t want the ever-present Granit Xhaka, rated at £31.5m according to Transfermarkt, to start in midfield against their arch-rivals.
Arsene Wenger looks likely to line up with a 4-2-3-1 system against Spurs, with Xhaka, Aaron Ramsey, Jack Wilshere and Mohamed Elneny those likely to be in contention to start in the middle of the park.
Xhaka has started all 26 of the Gunners’ Premier League matches so far this season – although he doesn’t appear to have impressed some of the Emirates Stadium faithful – while Ramsey scored a hat-trick in the 5-1 win against Everton last weekend, and Wilshere is closing in on a new deal having impressed on his return to the side in the last few months.
Arsenal supporters were quick to have their say on Wenger’s midfield conundrum via social media, and while one said “we will lose the game if Xhaka does start”, another said “play both Ramsey and Wilsh and drop Xhaka”.
Here is just a selection of the Twitter reaction…
If Xhaka plays we have a better chance of losing. If u want a defensive minded player put Elneny at this point there is 0 reason Xhaka should start. Elneny and even Wilshere and Ramsey can all defend better than him and he gives up posesssion in our half from time to time
— RetroSwoop (@RetroSwoop) February 8, 2018
I don’t get why Robbie was surprised about troopz saying to drop xhaka. The player has cost massively against Bournemouth & Swansea last 2 away games . It’s a shambles if xhaka & iwobi start ahead of Wilshere tomorrow
— Josh Robinson (@JoshRobbo11) February 9, 2018
Taking into account injures. Cech.. Id start same team same formation as Everton but I'd swap xhaka for Wilshire.
— Arran Beadle (@Gooner_Essex) February 9, 2018
Yes because any team without Iwobi & Xhaka in the starting 11 is a strong team plus Lacazette has to start https://t.co/qOVjdNjAQb
— Just jeff (@JeffreyDeontay) February 9, 2018
Maybe… If yes, in mid 3 with Wilshere/Ramsey, in front of unchanged back 4. If no, back 5 with Ainsley at LWB, Wilshere/Ramsey in the middle. Jack needs to start the derby and Xhaka can take a seat for a game.
— Brendan Hall (@TurkeyReynolds) February 8, 2018
To end the debate – play both Ramsey and wilsh and drop xhaka. Hasn't really done much offensively or defensively to warrant a start… #AFC
— V.S (@SutariaViraj) February 8, 2018
We will lose the game if Xhaka does start
— Bennett Adley (@BennettAdley) February 8, 2018
Both & drop Xhaka. Xhaka doesn’t sit & defend so why waste him & use 2 better players in the middle. The death threats towards Xhaka were a disgrace but should be dropped IMO
— Gooner Nick (@NickVann1987) February 7, 2018
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