Granit Xhaka has warned his Arsenal team-mates ahead of their trip to Newcastle United on Sunday, reminding them of the Gunners’ loss at the same venue last season. Mikel Arteta’s side got back to winning ways and returned to the top of the Premier League table with a 3-1 victory over Chelsea on Tuesday night, but face a much tougher test against a Newcastle side who have lost just four games this season – the same as Manchester City and Arsenal – and have been beaten just once at St James’ Park in 2022-23. At the end of last season, Newcastle beat Arsenal in a result which ultimately saw the Gunners miss out on a Champions League spot, with Xhaka hitting out at his team-mates at full-time in an angry rant, accusing them of not listening to Arteta, being unable to handle the pressure and telling some of them to ‘stay at home’.
Xhaka has now told Sky Sports: ‘We don’t forget the game we had there last season. I have to be honest they destroyed us. They were much, much better, they wanted it more. We have to go there and show them we are ready and why we are where we are. We deserve to be where we are at the moment. But it will be a very tough moment because Newcastle are doing a very good job. We have to go there and believe and to play our game and hopefully we can take the three points back to London.’
The Swiss international still believes Arsenal can win the Premier League title this season and speaking about the Gunners’ recent slump, he added: ‘I try to give advice with my experience. I’ve had worse times than every player here, that’s for sure. I try to help the youngsters to give them motivation. Of course if you [don’t win for] four games you start to struggle, but this is my job.’