Granit Xhaka: If you don’t have balls, stay at home

Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka criticized his teammates after a “disaster” performance against Newcastle United on Monday.

Arsenal started the day two points behind Tottenham Hotspur in the league, knowing that fourth place and a place in the Champions League is still within reach.

However, Mikel Arteta’s side bullied, outperformed and beat the Magpies at St James’ Park, and they were lucky not to lose before the break.

“It is very difficult to find the right words, we came here to show a different match, but from the first minute to the 90th minute we did not deserve to be on the field,” Xhaka told Sky Sports News.

“I can’t explain to you why [our performance was poor]. We didn’t do what the match plan was, we didn’t listen to the coach and do our own things, and when you do your things, those matches happen.

“What happened was a disastrous performance. Like this you don’t deserve to play Champions LeagueYou don’t even deserve to play the Europa League. It’s very difficult to deal with at the moment, and I don’t know why we don’t do what the coach asks of us.

“If someone isn’t ready for this game, stay home. It’s that simple. No matter what age – you can be 30, you can be 35, you can be 10, you can be 18, if you’re not ready for it or stressed out. Stay on the bench, or stay home. Don’t come here.

“We need people to have balls, sorry to say that, to come here to play because we knew this game was one of the most important for us. When you perform like this, it’s not acceptable.”

“I feel very sad for us, very disappointed, and very sorry for the people who came here to support us, Arsenal fans. This was not the way we wanted to go, I can only say sorry to them, I have no other words.”

On the last day of the season, Arsenal host Everton in the Emirates, but Tottenham can win fourth place with a point against bottom club Norwich City.