Arsenal fans react on Twitter to Granit Xhaka display v Basel
By Matt Farr
Arsenal’s Granit Xhaka was the happier of two brothers as the Gunners came away with a 4-1 victory over Basel on Tuesday – and Gunners fans were impressed with his performance.
The 24-year-old returned to his former club to face his older brother Taulant, who lined up for the Swiss outfit.
The victory saw the Gunners pip Paris Saint-Germain at the top of Group A, and earn themselves a place in the knockout stages of the Champions League as group winners.
This is the first time in seven attempts that Arsenal have qualified from their group as winners.
Summer signing Lucas Perez, handed a rare start by Arsene Wenger, seized his opportunity by netting a superb hat-trick, before youngster Alex Iwobi netted Arsenal’s fourth just eight minutes after the restart.
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Substitute Seydou Doumbia denied the Gunners a clean-sheet with his 78th minute strike, but the goal proved nothing more than a consolation for Basel.
Xhaka’s controlling midfield display drew particular praise from Arsenal fans, who took to Twitter to voice their opinions.
Here are some of their messages on Twitter:
This is a masterclass from Xhaka in midfield, wiping tears off my phone right now. Mikel Arteta died for this.
— Sultan (@WMFormation) December 6, 2016
Xhaka is really good. Type of player we’ve lacked for years
— Shkodran (@Maingi__) December 6, 2016
Xhaka finally getting over 100 passes for us. Important. Hopefully he doesn’t go back to the 50 range at the weekend
— Manuel (@Emma_V2) December 6, 2016
Granit Xhaka is such a tidy player ?⚪️
— Ronnie Griffiths (@RGriffiths21) December 6, 2016
I like xhaka he has to play
— John Kirby (@Kirbyjp) December 6, 2016
Been so impressed with Xhaka this season, apart from one poor game against Swansea he’s been superb, needs to start every game #AFC
— Patrick Timmons (@PatrickTimmons1) December 6, 2016
— Jase The GÖÖNER (@JaseTheGooner) December 6, 2016
Honestly Granit Xhaka efficiency is unreal! He doesn’t waste anything! Makes his passes and his tackles 100% #AFC
— Marc Montgomery (@montgomery_marc) December 6, 2016
It was night to remember for Arsenal, who now enter Monday’s Champions League knockout round draw, in the hope of drawing an ‘easy’ tie.
The group win rules out a potential clash with Barcelona, who have ruined Arsene Wenger’s party four times in the last 11 seasons. The Gunners cannot be drawn with AS Monaco, Atletico Madrid or Napoli either.
They can though, still be drawn with Bayern Munich, who knocked them out of both the 2013 and 2014 tournaments, as well as one of Borussia Dortmund or Real Madrid, depending on their result on Wednesday night.
As for Basel, Ludogorets’ draw with PSG ruled out a potential Europa League appearance for the Swiss outfit, who finished bottom of the group with just two points.
In other Arsenal news, here are three things we learned from Arsenal’s victory.