By Matt Farr
Former Arsenal and current Switzerland international defender Johan Djourou took to social media to launch a defence of under-fire midfielder Granit Xhaka.
The midfielder was shown a straight red-card for a rash challenge on Steven Defour, during Arsenal’s 2-1 victory over Burnley in the Premier League on Sunday.
The 24-year-old’s dismissal was his second since arriving at the Emirates in the summer, having been sent-off against Swansea in October, by the same referee, John Moss.
His reckless tackle left Arsenal fans divided, with some taking the opportunity to criticise Xhaka for his indiscipline.
However, his Switzerland international team-mate Johan Djourou has hit back at the fans out for Xhaka’s head, delivering his own message of support for the Arsenal man on Instagram.
After Xhaka posted a photograph, one fan asked the ex-Arsenal defender to tell his Switzerland team-mate to leave the club, Djourou replied:
“@omarkharobi1 Why should I do that? He got a red card again yeah ok! We won at the end that’s most important. And let me tell you Granit gives everything for the Arsenal shirt! And that’s his style of play so don’t be hard on him! He plays with passion. He will learn!”
Djourou began his senior career with Arsenal, where he remained for over a decade before moving to the Hannover in the German Bundesliga. He currently plays for Hamburg.
Xhaka, meanwhile, does appear to have issues with discipline. This was his fifth dismissal in league competition since the start of last season – more than any other player in Europe’s top five divisions.
It was also his ninth red card in three seasons, and he will now be banned for Arsenal’s next four matches, including their title clash with Chelsea on February 4.
In other Arsenal news, a Times journalist has slammed Arsene Wenger over Jack Wilshere.