Granit Xhaka is no longer the Arsenal captain and has been linked with Newcastle United.

Paul Merson has suggested in The Daily Star that Granit Xhaka will leave Arsenal in the January transfer window.

The former Arsenal star believes that Xhaka will not be happy that he has been stripped off of the captaincy.

Merson, who now works as a pundit for Sky Sports, believes that it is “baffling” from Arsenal manager Unai Emery to hand the captaincy to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, and thinks there could be a few clubs in Europe who would want to sign Xhaka.

Merson wrote about Xhaka in The Daily Star: “I’d be shocked if he stays at Arsenal now. They will probably look to sell him in January and he will probably be only too happy to go.

“It’s a big statement to make, doing that. I’m surprised Emery did it. And then to give it to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang when he sometimes doesn’t start games is baffling.”

Merson added: “It’s going to be hard for him to stay at the club. But I think there could be a few clubs in Europe after him if he leaves now.”

Leaving Arsenal in January

Newcastle United are interested in signing Xhaka from Premier League rivals Arsenal in the January transfer window, according to The Times, and Emery himself has admitted that the Switzerland international may not play for the Gunners again.

Emery told Sky Sports: “As a coach I have a responsibility for the team. We need a player like Granit Xhaka. But also, I don’t know if he’s going to play again.”

Given that the 27-year-old has fallen out with the fans, it is hard to see him get them back on his side, and perhaps the best solution is for the Swiss to find a new club in the January transfer window.

In other news, £37m ace wanted by Spurs reportedly has heart set on joining next club