Granit Xhaka Has An Odd Reason For Changing His Arsenal Squad Number
You would think that inheriting the squad number of a first team regular would be good enough for Granit Xhaka, upon the completion of his £30m move to the Emirates from Borussia Monchengladbach. However, just three days after being given Aaron Ramsey's number 16 shirt, the Swiss midfielder decided he'd rather have another number adorning his back.
Ramsey's 16 jersey was vacant after the Welshman was awarded Mikel Arteta's number eight, following the Spaniard's recent retirement. Xhaka, however, wasn't overly keen on Ramsey's old number and instead preferred to inherit the shirt of a true Arsenal legend - Marouane Chamakh.
Don't worry, if you ordered a Xhaka 16 shirt via Arsenal Direct, we've got your back - we'll reprint with Xhaka 29 pic.twitter.com/1EOUVH4ona- Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) May 31, 2016
Chamakh notoriously failed to light up the Emirates Stadium during his three years in North London, scoring just 14 goals, yet no one has been able to do his number 29 shirt justice in the intervening three years since his departure in 2013.
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Swiss international Xhaka wanted the 29 shirt as it's the year of his birth, backwards. We're not entirely sure why reversing the order of nine and two is of such importance to the 23-year-old but nonetheless, his new employers have bowed to his wishes and confirmed the change, while promising supporters who had ordered a Xhaka shirt with '16' on the back that they would be printed with '29', instead. In a statement, the club said:
"We had previously announced he would be wearing No 16. Supporters who ordered shirts with his name and the original number via Arsenal Direct or in Arsenal stores will have their shirts automatically printed with the new number."
OK, take two. Want our new signing's name on the back of your shirt? You can pre-order here: https://t.co/v8LQdJqyrD pic.twitter.com/ediuaH4sdZ
- Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) May 31, 2016
"We apologise for any inconvenience this causes but hope our supporters understand the special circumstances on this occasion."
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