Granit Xhaka is a Swiss professional footballer who plays as a midfielder for Premier League side Arsenal and captains the Switzerland national team. Xhaka began his career in Basel, where he won the Swiss Super League in each of his first two seasons.
In 2012, he joined Bundesliga club Borussia Mönchengladbach, where he established a reputation as a technically skilled player and natural leader while also facing criticism for his volatility. In May 2016, he made a high-profile move to Arsenal for a sum in the region of £30 million. Granit Xhaka was a member of the Swiss squad that won the FIFA U-17 World Cup in 2009. He made his senior debut in 2011 and has since garnered over 100 caps for his country.
Granit Xhaka Bio/Wiki[table id=3582 /]
Life of Granit Xhaka
Granit Xhaka was born on September 27, 1992. He is a Swiss professional footballer who currently plays for Premier League club Arsenal and captains the Swiss national team.
Xhaka was born in the Swiss city of Basel to an ethnic Albanian family from Podujevo, Kosovo, which was then part of the FR Yugoslavia. That year, the family relocated from Podujevo to Basel, Switzerland, where Granit and his older brother Taulant Xhaka were born.
He began his football career with Concordia Basel and transferred to Basel in 2002. He has played for different Basel youth teams and has been a part of the U-21 squad since 2008. Xhaka appeared in 37 games for the U-21 squad between 2008 and 2010, scoring eleven goals.
Granit won the Swiss Super League in each of his first two seasons with Basel. In 2012, he joined Bundesliga club Borussia Mönchengladbach, where he established a reputation as a technically skilled player and natural leader while also facing criticism for his volatility.
At the age of 22, he was named captain of Borussia Mönchengladbach and led the side to UEFA Champions League qualifying for the second consecutive season. In 2016, he made a high-profile move to Arsenal for a sum in the region of £30 million.
Xhaka was a member of the Swiss squad that won the FIFA U-17 World Cup in 2009. He made his senior debut in 2011. He has received over 100 caps for Switzerland, including appearances at the FIFA WC in 2014 and 2018, and the UEFA European Championship in 2016 and 2020.
Taulant, Xhaka’s older brother, is also a professional footballer who plays for Basel and the Albania national team. Xhaka married his long-term girlfriend, Leonita Lekaj, in July 2017. His wife gave birth to their daughter, Ayana, on October 7, 2019.
Granit Xhaka Net Worth
Granit Xhaka enjoys an excellent contract from Arsenal. Being the captain of the Swiss team also has its perks. Thus, he enjoys a handsome salary of about 6 Million Euros per annum. Apart from football, he earns a lot from commercials as well. His market value stands at about 20 Million Euros. At present, Granit Xhaka’s net worth is 25 Million Euros.[table id=3581 /]
Granit Xhaka began his football career with Concordia Basel and transferred to Basel in 2002. He has played for different Basel youth teams and has been a part of the U-21 squad since 2008. He appeared in 37 games for the U-21 squad between 2008 and 2010, scoring eleven goals.
Thorsten Fink, a former Basel coach, once stated. “After Granit Xhaka, Xherdan Shaqiri is Switzerland’s top talent.” Ottmar Hitzfeld, the Swiss national football coach, has called him the “young Schweinsteiger.”
Granit Xhaka has been a member of the Basel first team since the start of the 2010–11 season. He made his first team debut against Debrecen in the third qualifying round of the 2010–11 UEFA Champions League at the Szusza Ferenc Stadium.
He scored the second goal in Basel’s 2–0 triumph at the end of the game. On May 15, 2011, he scored his first Super League goal in a 5–1 home triumph over FC Thun. Xhaka won the Super League Championship title with Basel at the conclusion of the 2010–11 season, and the Double, League Championship title, and Swiss Cup with the club at the end of the 2011–12 season.
Basel confirmed on their website on May 18, 2012, that Xhaka has accepted terms with Lucien Favre’s Borussia Mönchengladbach. Xhaka signed a five-year contract with the club after passing medicals. Mönchengladbach did not disclose the transfer cost, although it is expected to be around €8.5 million.
On August 18, 2012, Xhaka made his debut in a DFB-Pokal first round match against Alemannia Aachen. Three days later, he made his debut for Borussia Dortmund in a 1–3 home loss to Dynamo Kyiv in qualifying for the 2012–13 UEFA Champions League. On August 25, he made his Bundesliga debut in the team’s season-opening 2–1 home win against 1899 Hoffenheim.
In a 3–2 loss against 1. FC Nürnberg, he scored his first and only goal of the season. Xhaka started 29 games and made five replacement appearances in his second season at Gladbach, who finished sixth in the 2014–15 Bundesliga.
Granit Xhaka started all 34 2014–15 Bundesliga games for Borussia Dortmund and was nominated to the league’s team of the season. Borussia Dortmund finished third to qualify for the 2015–16 UEFA Champions League.
Xhaka led Borussia Dortmund and scored his first goal of the season in a 4–2 win over FC Augsburg on September 23, 2015. Xhaka captained the team again in the following match, a 3–1 victory over VfB Stuttgart. On September 30, he made his Champions League debut for Borussia Dortmund in a 1–2 group stage loss at home to Manchester City.
On 20 December, Granit Xhaka earned his fifth red card for the squad in his 95th game for punching his opponent in the first half; he willingly donated €20,000 to charity as an apology.
Arsenal purchased Xhaka from Borussia Mönchengladbach for a cost of about £30–35 million on May 25, 2016. Xhaka was signed after Arsenal supposedly backed out of a move for N’Golo Kanté due to agency fees totaling more than £10 million. Xhaka made his Arsenal debut (as a half-time substitute) in a 2–1 triumph over the MLS All-Stars.
Granit Xhaka made his competitive debut for Arsenal in the club’s opening Premier League encounter of the 2016–17 season, a 4–3 defeat to Liverpool, replacing midfielder Mohamed Elneny in the 65th minute while also receiving a yellow card. On September 17, 2016, he scored his first goal for the club, a 25-yard thunderbolt in a 4–1 Premier League victory over Hull City.
Four days later, he would score another long-range goal, this time from 30 yards, in a 4–0 EFL Cup win over Nottingham Forest. Xhaka received his first red card for Arsenal – and his ninth for club and country since April 2014 – in a 3–2 win over Swansea City on October 15, 2016.
Granit Xhaka was sent off for the second time this season by referee Jon Moss in Arsenal’s 2–1 home win against Burnley on January 22, 2017. After scoring his first goal for the club in September, he would not score in the Premier League again until May, when he scored the first goal of a 2–0 victory over Manchester United, ending United’s undefeated streak of 25 games.
Xhaka went on to play a key role in Arsenal’s FA Cup victory. Xhaka’s first goal of the 2017–18 season came in a 3–3 draw with Liverpool, when he struck a 25-yard thunderbolt to tie the game at 2–2.
On September 27, 2019, Arsenal manager Unai Emery stated that Xhaka will be the Gunners’ next captain, succeeding Laurent Koscielny.
Granit Xhaka was criticised after being substituted in the 61st minute of the match against Crystal Palace at Emirates Stadium on October 27, 2019. When his name was announced to be replaced, a number of the Arsenal fans began to applaud.
As he went off the field, he was booed, and he retaliated by making various sarcastic gestures and aggressively yelling “fuck off” twice to the spectators who jeered his name. He also took off his jersey before heading down the tunnel.
After the game, Xhaka’s actions were heavily criticised, and manager Unai Emery called Xhaka’s actions “wrong.” Emery also recommended that Xhaka apologise. The club stated on October 30, 2019, that Xhaka will be provided counselling.
Granit Xhaka later explained the situation to Arsenal through Twitter. Xhaka was deprived of the captain’s armband on November 5, 2019, only a month and a week after his appointment. After previously serving as vice captain, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was named captain.
Following this event, Xhaka took a break from the first team squad, and it was widely assumed that he would depart Arsenal during the approaching January transfer window.
Granit Xhaka was reintroduced into the team as a crucial player under new manager Mikel Arteta and experienced a big uptick in his form for the club, slowly beginning to win over the supporters with whom he had previously had an oft-fractious relationship.
Granit Xhaka was picked to start the FA Cup Final against Chelsea on August 1, 2020, and went on to collect his second winners’ medal as Arsenal won their 14th FA Cup.
On August 28, 2020, Xhaka started in the 2020 FA Community Shield, which Arsenal won 5–4 in a penalty shootout over Liverpool after the match was 1–1 after 90 minutes. Arsenal will play Burnley in a Premier League match on December 13, 2020.
After a fight with Dwight McNeil and afterwards grabbed Ashley Westwood by the neck, Xhaka was sent off in the 56th minute. Burnley finally won 1–0 when teammate Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored an own goal in the 73rd minute.
He scored his first Premier League goal of the 2020–21 season on December 26, 2020, from a free kick in a 3–1 home win over Chelsea.
Granit Xhaka was sent a red card in the first leg of an EFL Cup semi-final against Liverpool on January 13, 2022. It was his seventh red card in his Arsenal career overall. The game finally ended in a stalemate.
Switzerland youth squads
Xhaka has represented Switzerland’s junior team at the U-17 level. At 2009, he competed in the Under-17 World Cup in Nigeria. The Swiss national team won the World Cup.
He made his debut for the Switzerland national under-19 football team as a replacement on May 25, 2010, as the squad defeated the Austria national under-19 football team 3–2 at the Schwaz, Austria. On September 7, 2010, he scored his first goal for the U-19 squad in a 3–0 victory over the Czech Republic.
Granit Xhaka made his debut for the under-21 squad as a substitute on September 3, 2010, when the team defeated the Republic of Ireland 1–0 at the Cornaredo Stadium in Lugano. This was the last game in Group 2’s qualification for the 2011 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship.
Xhaka was a part of the Swiss U-21 squad that competed in the final event, which was hosted by Denmark from June 11 to June 25, 2011. The Swiss squad reached the final without surrendering a goal, however they were defeated 2–0 by Spain.
Granit Xhaka was uncertain whether to play for his own country or Albania before making his international debut for Switzerland, and he complained to the Albanian sports media that the FSHF was neglecting him while the Swiss Football Association was showing considerably more interest.
On 4 June 2011, Xhaka made his debut for Switzerland against England in a 2–2 UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying tie at Wembley Stadium. In his sixth international game, he scored his first international goal in a 1–0 away win over Luxembourg at the Stade Josy Barthel on November 15, 2011.
Switzerland again attempted to recruit Xhaka to compete in the Olympic Football Tournament in 2012, but he chose to stay at his current club for pre-season training.
He played in all ten of Switzerland’s 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifying matches, scoring both goals in a 2–0 win against Slovenia. Xhaka became a part of Switzerland’s 2014 World Cup roster by national coach Ottmar Hitzfeld on June 2, 2014. Xhaka scored in the team’s second encounter, a 5–2 loss against France.
Granit Xhaka was included to Switzerland’s Euro 2016 squad, which kicked off against Albania in Lens. Xhaka faced up against his brother Taulant, whose team won 1–0. He was named the match’s MVP. Xhaka played every minute of Switzerland’s campaign, which concluded in the round of 16 with a loss to Poland at the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard; following a 1–1 tie, he was the only player who did not score in the penalty shootout.
Before the 2018 World Cup qualifiers, there was talk that Xhaka may transfer allegiances to represent Kosovo, which had been admitted as a full member of FIFA and was now permitted to play competitive matches for the first time.
Granit Xhaka, on the other hand, released an open letter in which he stated that his participation in Euro 2016 barred him from changing his allegiance. Therefore, he was bound to Switzerland.
Xhaka was nominated to Switzerland’s 23-man squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia by manager Vladimir Petkovi. On June 22, he equalised with a long-range shot as the Swiss rallied from behind to overcome Serbia 2–1.
He and teammate Xherdan Shaqiri, who is also of Kosovar heritage, celebrated their goals with an eagle gesture like the Albanian flag’s double headed eagle. FIFA penalised each player 10,000 Swiss francs for “unsporting behaviour according to fair-play rules.”
In the absence of Stephan Lichtsteiner, Vladimir Petkovi appointed Granit Xhaka as a temporary captain, which drew criticism from former Swiss international Stéphane Henchoz, who claimed that Xhaka could not properly represent Switzerland due to his Albanian heritage.
He instead suggested that Lichtsteiner, Yann Sommer, or Fabian Schär serve as captain. In an attempt to entice Xherdan Shaqiri back to the national team, Xhaka offered him the leadership in September 2019.
Granit Xhaka FIFA 22
Granit Xhaka was born on September 27, 1992. He is currently 31 years old and plays as a Defensive Midfielder for Arsenal in England. His overall rating in FIFA 22 is 79 with a potential of 79. Xhaka has got a 3-star skillmoves rating. He prefers to shoot with his left foot. His workrates are Low / Medium. Xhaka is about 1.85 meters tall while he weighs around 82 kgs. Currently, Granit Xhaka is playing with number 34. His best stats are:
- Aggression: 91
- Shot Power: 90
- Short Pass: 84
- Long Pass: 84
- Stamina: 82
Granit Xhaka FIFA 22 Stats[table id=3580 /]
Facts about Granit Xhaka
- While he is a solid player at the base of midfield, Xhaka is also not exactly a tidy player. Xhaka is not one of the fastest players on the pitch. Teams tend to try and expose that weakness by getting midfield runners to run at him.
- He also has trouble keeping his temper in check at times. He finished the 2016 Bundesliga with three red cards. Nobody else in the league had three.
- Xhaka’s parents are originally from Kosovo, but they moved to Basel, Switzerland where Granit was born. Football runs in the family and his elder brother Taulant Xhaka, one-and-a-half years older than him, is a defender for Albania.
- After a terrible start to the 2015-16 season, Manager Lucien Favre resigned. The new manager Andre Schubert’s first move was to replace the injured captain Tony Jantschke with Granit Xhaka. This happened right before his 23rd birthday. To lead a team at just 23 is no joke.
- Xhaka loves the number 34. It was his jersey number back at Basel. He even has it tattooed on his back.
- Xhaka married his long-term girlfriend, Leonita Lekaj, in July 2017. His wife gave birth to their daughter, Ayana, on October 7, 2019.
- His most striking ability is the extraordinary range of passing. He tends to spray the ball around the field from his deep-lying midfield position.
- Granit’s father, Ragip, was a student at the University of Pristina. When he was 22, he participated in demonstrations against the Communist Yugoslavia rule in Kosovo. Therefore, he was sentenced to prison for about three and a half years.
- Granit Xhaka once swore at fans after being substituted during their Premier League draw with Crystal Palace. He seemingly mouthed “fuck off” twice as he pushed away a handshake from Emery.
Granit married Leonita Lekaj in 2017.
Xhaka is 1.85 meters tall.
Xhaka receives a handsome salary of 6 Million Euros.
Taulant plays for Albania.