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Arsenal star's yellow card against Leeds being investigated by National Crime Agency amid suspicions of a betting scandal 

Controversy over Xhaka's yellow card in the 4-1 victory
Controversy over Xhaka's yellow card in the 4-1 victory
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Matthew Guyett

Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka's yellow card picked up in the 4-1 away win over Leeds United on December 18 is being investigated amid suspicions of a betting scandal.

A six-month investigation has been conducted by the FA and referred to the National Crime Agency with there being a risk of serious corruption and potential criminality.

Daily Mail reports that the FA's inquiry began after they were alerted to suspicious patterns of betting relating to Xhaka's yellow card in the December fixture.

📰 Arsenal Granit Xhaka's yellow card against Leeds is being investigated by the National Crime Agency amid suspicions of a MAJOR scandal following suspicious betting activity into his booking.It was reported shortly afterwards that the gamble earned a pay-out of around £250k. https://t.co/qtskrTuppp

The report claims that there is no wrongdoing on the part of Xhaka nor any other Arsenal players.

The yellow card offence occurred when referee Andre Marriner booked Xhaka in the 86th minute for time-wasting.

Xhaka stands over the ball in his own half, taking his time over taking a free-kick for Arsenal.

A pay-out of £250,000 was earned on the betting exchange, which allows users to place bets with other users.

The suspicious bet was reported by leading bookmakers to the FA and it far exceeds what is usually wagered for bets involving yellow cards.

The odds on Xhaka picking up a yellow card were also dramatically higher in the last 10 minutes of the game than prior to kick-off.

Xhaka has a well-known poor disclipany record for Arsenal, having picked up 68 yellow cards and 5 red cards during his time at the Emirates Stadium.


Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka may be scuppering a deal for Leicester City midfielder Youri Tielemans

The Belgian midfielder is a target for Mikel Arteta
The Belgian midfielder is a target for Mikel Arteta

Away from the controversy regarding Granit Xhaka's suspicious yellow card picked up against Leeds, the Swiss midfielder is proving somewhat problematic for the Gunners.

The north London side's failure to offload the 29-year-old is putting a potential deal for Leicester City midfielder Youri Tielemans at risk.

The Athletic reports that the Gunners would be much better placed in their £25 million pursuit of Tielemans, 25, if they sell Xhaka.

Youri Tielemans is another name high on Arsenal’s list but that is a more nuanced situation. It is likely to depend on other movement in central midfield. If there was a deal to be done for Granit Xhaka, it would open the door wider for Tielemans (£25m fee). [@TheAthleticUK] #afc

Xhaka nearly left the Emirates Stadium last year with a move to Serie A side AS Roma touted.

But the potential transfer fell through and Jose Mourinho's side have since signed out-of-contract Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic this past week.

It remains to be seen if Xhaka's continued presence at the Gunners denies Tielemans a move to Mikel Arteta's side.

Xhaka made 30 appearances last season, scoring one goal and contributing two assists.

Meanwhile, Tielemans made 50 appearances for the Foxes, scoring 7 goals and contributing 5 assists.


Edited by Ashwin
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