Mikel Arteta hails 'natural leader' Granit Xhaka and opens up if he has chance to regain captain's armband

Mikel Arteta hails 'natural leader' Granit Xhaka and opens up if he has chance to regain captain's armband
  • Xhaka was stripped of the captaincy following a conflict with fans in October last year.
  • The midfielder was ready to leave Arsenal in January but Arteta convinced him to stay.
  • The boss says Xhaka is always '1,000 per cent committed' and is helping the teammates all the time.
  • The head coach is reluctant to give a definite answer concerning Xhaka's chances to get the captain's role again.
  • He says he wants 24 skippers in his squad and there are lots of ways to express your leadership potential apart from wearing the armband.

"Yeah, he's a natural leader," Mikel Arteta said when asked about Granit Xhaka's leadership qualities as quoted by the official website.

"He's someone who is always 1,000 per cent committed, not just for himself but to help all his teammates all the time. I'm happy that you can hear him more now."

Could Xhaka wear the armband in the future?

"Hopefully I have 24 captains who are willing to take leadership wherever they like," the boss replied.

"There is not only one way to be a captain, you can be a captain in many different ways. Be yourself, express yourself, play with the passion and set an example to your teammates. That is, for me, a leader."

Granit Xhaka was stripped of the armband and frozen out of the squad for an incident in the Palace game in October 2019.

The 27-year-old told the home crowd to f**k off on hearing jeers coming from the stands when he was heading for the touchline as he was substituted. He pulled off his shirt and threw it the grass in despair.

The Swiss international was ready to return to the Bundesliga as Hertha Berlin were on the verge of signing him.

However, Arteta's appointment changed Xhaka's fortunes. The midfielder received a vote of confidence from the boss and is now enjoying regular game time under the Spaniard.

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Source: Arsenal FC

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