• Midfielder was sent off in 1-0 home defeat to Burnley
  • Arteta: ‘After the red card, he was in a difficult place’

Mikel Arteta has described Granit Xhaka’s form as “phenomenal” and a key reason behind Arsenal’s greater solidity in recent weeks.

Xhaka has been impressive since returning from suspension incurred from the red card he received against Burnley on 13 December. His dismissal came at 0-0 when he lost his cool and grabbed Ashley Westwood by the throat and, after Arsenal had slipped to a 1-0 defeat, it saw him pilloried on social media – and not for the first time.

Related: Mesut Özil says Arsenal goodbyes and flies out to complete Fenerbahce move

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