Arsenal star Xhaka responds to Roma transfer rumours

Switzerland captain Granit Xhaka insists speculation over his Arsenal future will not distract him at Euro 2020.

Xhaka has been heavily linked with a summer move to Roma and joining former Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho at the Serie A club.

The 28-year-old midfielder has made 220 appearances for Arsenal since signing from Borussia Monchengladbach in 2016.

“There are always rumours as soon as the transfer market opens but I don’t want to talk about my future,” Xhaka said ahead of Switzerland’s opening Euro 2020 game with Wales in Baku on Saturday.

“I am 100 per cent focused here with the national team and I want to keep that until the end of the tournament.

“What happens afterwards, you will then get to know about it. Everything else doesn’t distract me.

“I am fit and motivated and looking forward to doing a lot of things in this tournament for the team.”

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Switzerland possess huge experience, with the 94-times-capped Xhaka supplemented by Liverpool midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri, Torino wing-back Ricardo Rodriguez and Newcastle centre-back Fabian Schar.

The Swiss have won all five of their games in 2021, with World Cup qualifying wins over Bulgaria and Lithuania and friendly victories against Finland, the United States and Liechtenstein.

Xhaka said on Switzerland’s Euro 2020 prospects: “I have a good feeling. We’ve had a good, long preparation phase and are looking forward to the start.

“There are high expectations from the outside, the public expect a lot from us.

“We will take it step by step but the expectations are very high from ourselves.”

Head coach Vladimir Petkovic has been in charge since 2014 and steered Switzerland to the last 16 of the 2016 European Championship and the 2018 World Cup.

Italy and Turkey complete the Group A line-up and Petkovic said: “Because it’s the first match you don’t know what level ourselves or Wales are at.

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“But Wales are certainly tough opponents and deserve the greatest of respect. They are awkward customers.

“They are compact defensively and good one against one, but they also have a lot of quality in the final third with some prodigiously talented players who know what they’re doing.

“But what we want to do is dominate proceedings, set the tempo and have a cutting edge in the final third.”

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