Granit Xhaka admits: “I was very close to Roma last year.”

Andy Mattioli

Arsenal midfielder and Swiss international Granit Xhaka admitted to being close to joining Roma in the summer of 2021 at the request of Jose Mourinho.

Following weeks of negotiations, the transfer fell through and Xhaka renewed his expiring contract with the Gunners.

In a recent interview with ESPN, Xhaka detailed what went on last year, addressing his links with the Italian capital club.

“There was something there, yes,” he said when asked about the truth to the Roma rumors.

“I was very close to Roma, but nothing came of it because Mikel [Arteta] and [technical director] Edu didn’t let me go – they wanted to keep me here.”

“Of course, my first reaction was to stay at the football club, but they opened the door: ‘If something comes, I can leave.’ I have to be honest as well. I don’t want to say a name now, but the door was open for me to leave the club as well. But in the end, people decided to keep me here.”

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MatchDay 37
19 May 20:45