Pundit names strong sanction that should be issued to Xhaka after gesture

Darren Bent has said that Arsenal could be prepared to drop captain Granit Xhaka following his controversial gesture to the fans on Sunday.

After being jeered by a collection of Gunners fans upon his substitution against Crystal Palace on Sunday, Xhaka cupped his hands to his ear before issuing expletives to the crowd and hauling off his shirt.

Boss Unai Emery confirmed that he is to hold talks with midfielder about whether he should keep hold of the armband but speaking to talkSPORT, Bent said the sanction should be a lot more severe than that.

“For me, once you tell the fans to f-off, you wave your hands up and you take the shirt off and go straight down the tunnel, for me that’s it at the club,” the pundit said.

“I don’t like when fans boo their own players, because he is one of your own, but when you have that reaction, I just think straight away that you’re half kind of just giving in. That kind of reaction shows me that you’ve given in.



“There’s probably frustration in there as well because he’s not happy with his own performance, because he knows he hasn’t been playing very well.

“But I just think the reaction to the crowd and even to the manager, and to take your shirt off and storm down the tunnel, for me there’s no coming back from that.

“Him walking off slowly is bad, you need to get off the pitch quicker, but I think the moment you disrespect the shirt you show a lack of respect to your team-mates, people who have played for the football club in the past and everyone associated with the club.”

Read more: Ian Wright utterly confused by Arsenal performance as he tears into Xhaka