Xhaka defends poor disciplinary record at Arsenal

Xhaka defends poor disciplinary record at Arsenal

Granit Xhaka has stated that he would continue to take chances and will not alter his style of play as a result of Arsenal's recent bad disciplinary record.

The Switzerland international was sent off in the Gunners' Carabao Cup semi-final against Liverpool in the first leg. They held on for a draw in that game, but the Reds won the rematch, with Thomas Partey also receiving a red card late in the game.

Since Mikel Arteta took over as manager in December 2019, Arsenal have got 14 red cards and have been criticized for their lack of composure. However, Xhaka, who has developed a reputation for early showers, argues he is forced to take risks that might always get him penalized.

"It's not like I'm planning this. It's not like I'm doing this on purpose. But sometimes, I am in a position where I have to take a 50:50. It's risky, of course. Now people will say, 'Yeah, but why do you always [take] risks?'" he told Sky Sports.

"This is who I am. I can't change myself from today to tomorrow," he said.

"Of course, I need to improve and I know it. But in this moment, if [Diogo] Jota takes the ball and he scores, they will say again, 'Why didn't you stop him?' Now, I stop him, they say, 'Why do you get the red card?'

"In the end, after the game, everyone is smarter than in the moment - myself as well. Of course, when I see it back now and say, 'Do I need to go into the duel or not?' No.

"But it is a moment, a second, where I have to make a decision and this time I made the wrong one and I feel sorry for the team, I feel sorry for the supporters, but thank God they did an amazing job after that."

Since joining Arsenal in 2016, Xhaka has been disqualified five times. He also had a dismal record at former club Borussia Monchengladbach, where he was sent off six times.

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