Arsenal fans' worst fears realised as key player OUT of crucial Southampton clash | The Sun

ARSENAL fans' worst fears were realised after rumours Granit Xhaka wasn't in the squad for tonight's clash against Southampton.

The Gunners hosts the struggling Saints without their talisman midfielder after consecutive 2-2 draws with Liverpool and West Ham.

Mikel Arteta's side squandered a 2-0 lead in both games – hampering their chances of a first Premier League title since 2004.

Those two disappointing results mean Friday's clash against Southampton is a huge tests of the Gunners' character.

But in the build up to the game, rumours emerged on social media that key midfielder Xhaka, 30, was not with the squad.

Arsenal supporters were left fearing the worst after the rumours broke.

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One wrote on Twitter: "Not good news."

Another said: "Why is this all happening now?"

And a third added: "Of all days!"

Their fears were confirmed when Xhaka was not named in the squad for the match.

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He was ruled out after feeling ill on Friday morning, with summer signing Fabio Vieira taking his place in midfield.


In positive news for the Gunners, Oleksandr Zinchenko returned to the starting line up after missing the 2-2 draw against West Ham.

Xhaka has been crucial in helping Arteta and Co to the top of the Prem table this season.

He has started 30 out of 31 league games so far this campaign – scoring five goals and chipping in with five assists.

Following Friday's clash with the Saints, Arsenal travel to Manchester City on Wednesday in a game which could potentially decide who wins the title.

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