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Wenger on Xhaka and tackling technique

Granit Xhaka

Granit Xhaka will miss the next four games following his red card at Burnley.

Inevitably the topic came up at Arsene Wenger’s pre-match press conference on Thursday. Read on for some of the key quotes on Xhaka:

on a bad week for Granit…I felt that the sending off was harsh when I watched it again. It was not a dangerous tackle, it was a clumsy tackle. You have to accept that he can be punished for these kinds of tackles now. He has to learn from that. I don’t think he wanted to injure anybody. He has to learn from it. Unfortunately we will lose him for four games in a very important period of the season. Hopefully we will get away with it.

on Granit representing the club…I can only talk about him on what I’ve seen since the start. He’s had a fantastic attitude on a daily basis since he arrived here. Sometimes you don’t know how the players will behave on a daily basis but I must say that he has been absolutely marvellous to handle on a daily basis with his commitment, focus, dedication and I’ve never heard anything bad said about him.

on whether he has concerns over Granit’s tackling…More about his technique, I think he’s not naturally a great tackler and in his decision-making I think he is quite intelligent on the pitch. But it’s more the way he tackles that is not really convincing. He doesn’t master well the technique of tackling.

on whether he might bring someone in to help Granit with tackling…I would rather encourage him not to tackle, to stay on his feet and that’s the best way to deal with it. Tackling is a technique that you learn at a young age. You can improve it but when you are face to face with somebody, it’s better you stay up.