Arsenal fans fume at ‘underwhelming Xhaka downgrade’ as Gunners battle Barcelona for ex-Newcastle star transfer

ARSENAL fans have been left fuming at an “underwhelming Granit Xhaka downgrade” as they battle Barcelona for Spain ace Mikel Merino.

The former Newcastle star has spent the past six years with Real Sociedad, helping them become one of LaLiga’s top sides.

Arsenal are targeting a move for Spain and Real Sociedad star Mikel MerinoCredit: Getty
Some fans believe the Barcelona target is a downgrade on Granit XhakaCredit: Getty

But Merino’s contract expires at the end of next season.

And clubs are preparing to go to war over his signature.

Barcelona are thought to be leading the chase for Merino, who operates as a deep-lying playmaker.

But Catalan chiefs fear Arsenal could hijack the move as Mundo Deportivo claims Mikel Arteta sees him as a Xhaka replacement.


The Swiss star left for Bayer Leverkusen last summer, helping them win their first ever title.

Arsenal used both Thomas Partey and Jorginho in Xhaka’s place despite signing Declan Rice for £100million.

But Arteta wants a new No6 to take control of midfield and allow Rice to push forward in attack.

Merino’s profile fits the bill, while his experience means he will be expected to hit the ground running.

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However, some Arsenal fans are not keen on the proposed move.

One said: “An underwhelming Xhaka downgrade.”

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Another declared: “Merino in the Xhaka role? I really want Ebe Eze.”

One noted: “I really don’t think this is good enough for a team that wants to win the league and challenge for Europe.”

But one fan believes Merino would be a good fit.

They added: “Merino is a tall Xhaka and a bit faster. Hope we sign him, he is a very good player for midfield.”

Arsenal have a tricky start to the season

Source: Soccer -


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