Newcastle United 1-2 Arsenal: 5 Hits and Flops
#4 Hit: Granit Xhaka
When looking for someone to blame for Arsenal's struggles, failures or inability to win matches, supporters regularly turn towards a handful of players. None more so than Granit Xhaka, it seems. The Switzerland captain divides fans - some believe he's not good enough to patrol their midfield, while others feel he is a scapegoat and genuinely under-rated.
A performance like this one proves his worth in Emery's system and more importantly, Arsenal going forward. Playing alongside Matteo Guendouzi in his preferred deep-lying midfield role, he continues to provide a goal threat from distance and this was a valuable asset here.
His free-kick effort was beautifully struck and sent Dubravka sprawling, while also coming at an opportune time in the match where Arsenal were able to utilise their momentum to devastating effect.
One key pass, 82.5% accuracy (game-high 103 passes), one tackle, two interceptions, two clearances, no fouls (!). Not bad from the Gunners' silky metronome, whether you love him or hate him.