Arsenal's Xhaka named among 'world's greatest ever athletes' as Murray reveals hilarious message to tennis icon Federer

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Andy Murray chose to pick out Granit Xhaka as Basel's sporting icon rather than Roger Federer in a joke shared with his former opponent.
  • Scotsman in Switzerland for ATP 500
  • The birthplace of Federer and Xhaka
  • Arsenal fan Murray praised Gunners midfielder

WHAT HAPPENED? As he has aged, Great Britain's three-time Grand Slam winner has shaken off the 'boring' persona that he was often labelled with in the early stages of his tennis career. Upon arriving in Basel for the ATP 500 indoor tournament, Murray showed that he is quite the joker as he revealed the interaction he had with Federer upon landing in his - and Xhaka's - home city for this week's ATP 500 tournament.

WHAT HE SAID: Speaking to Aargauer Zeitung, he said: “I messaged Roger, when I landed in Basel and I said: ‘I just touched down in the city of one of the world's greatest ever athletes: Granit Xhaka'.

''I know that Granit Xhaka is from here, I’m a huge Arsenal fan. Xhaka is playing really, really well this season. He scored another wonderful goal on Sunday."

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THE BIGGER PICTURE: The renaissance of the Swiss midfielder at Arsenal is quite remarkable. He has gone from being public enemy number one at the Emirates Stadium to being one of the heroes on the terraces. His brilliant finish against Southampton was the latest example of his transformation into a more advanced number eight for Mikel Arteta.


Roger Federer

Granit Xhaka Arsenal Southampton 2022-23

Andy Murray Roger Federer

WHAT NEXT FOR XHAKA? As one of the more senior players at Arsenal nowadays, the 30-year-old will be key in helping the Gunners bounce back from a disappointing draw at Southampton. Before they can respond in the Premier League against bottom club Nottingham Forest, they have a tough Europa League trip to PSV on Thursday to prepare for.