Summer signing Granit Xhaka has spoken about his experience as an Arsenal player and revealed how he has been impressed by Arsene Wenger’s “insane charisma”.
Xhaka who is currently on international duty for Switzerland was Arsenal’s first summer signing when he was brought to the Emirates in a £30 million deal from Borussia Monchengladbach in early June.
He has had an impressive season so far with a phenomenal display of passing skills during the match against Watford typifying his performance. Xhaka’s confidence on the pitch is commendable however he admits being “very nervous” when he first met the manager and the team.
In an interview to his country’s local publication Apenzeller Zeitung, Xhaka spoke highly of Wenger. “He has an incredible way, an insane charisma,” he said. “You look at him and know: ‘Wow, this man has achieved and experienced so much.’ The respect for him is enormous.”
“I have to admit that in the first few days there was an undeniable nervousness,” he added. “You can see the players are world-class just by the way they pass the ball. Ozil, Sanchez and Cazorla for example, are huge personalities. Even though the club maybe spent more money on me, I can still learn a lot from them, in any respect.
“The work ethic and the ambition are impressive. You can’t afford to rest on your laurels at all or you’ll instantly be on the bench. Every training session, every sprint, every exercise must be done to the best your ability.”
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The midfielder also gave insights on Arsenal’s strict fitness regime and revealed that the club makes extra efforts in keeping the squad healthy.
“Arsenal prepare the players in the best way,” he said. “They pay attention to every detail. We are able to recover optimally during our flights. The food and the service, everything’s geared perfectly to each other.
“Every Monday we’re asked to undertake jump tests, to check the conditions of our muscles. There’s nothing you can hide. Once a week they do urine tests and your body fat percentage is tested regularly. The doctors cover all bases.”
Xhaka has appeared in all three Premier League games played in the season so far and has linked up well with Santi Cazorla. His excitement about the club is visible on the pitch with his dedicated performance balancing defence and offense in the midfield. The Swiss will return to play for Arsenal when they host Southampton at the Emirates on 10th September.