Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Granit Xhaka has expressed his desire to play in the Premier League in the future. The midfielder, who has been dubbed the "new Schweinsteiger", has admitted that it is a "childhood dream" to play for a club in the English top-flight.
The 23-year-old midfielder, who has been ever present in the heart of the Bundesliga club's midfield, has been heavily linked with a move to England during the ongoing January transfer window. According to German publication Bild, Chelsea and Arsenal are keen on securing his services, but they will have to meet his €40m (£30.5m, $43.5m) release clause to have any chance of landing him this month.
Xhaka has featured 15 times in the league for Monchengladbach this campaign, scoring three goals, and his style of play has seen him being compared to former Bayern Munich and Manchester United star Bastian Schweinsteiger. The Gunners have already signed Mohamed Elneny from FC Basel to provide cover for the injured Francis Coquelin and Santi Cazorla, but are keen on adding more depth to their midfield to boost their bid for a first Premier League title in over a decade.
The Switzerland international, however, has dismissed speculation linking him with an immediate move away from the Borussia-Park outfit, to whom he is contracted until the summer of 2019. However, the club's sporting director Max Eberl has given interested teams some hope to sign the midfielder in the summer when he admitted that a considerable fee could tempt the club into selling one of their top stars.
"I have a childhood dream, and that is the Premier League. No matter if I play a second or 100 matches in England, I would one day love to fulfil that childhood dream," Xhaka told Monchengladbach fanzine torfabrik.de, as translated by ESPN FC.
"I read about those things [speculated moves], sure, and overhear a lot of things, but it's only speculation. I am not interested in it.
"If there was something or the club had something [an offer], then we'd sit down. But currently there is nothing. I am under contract until 2019, feel great here, and I am happy. That's the state of things," the Swiss midfielder said.
During the interview, Xhaka, who wears the No 34 jersey at Monchengladbach, humoured the speculation by suggesting that Francis Coquelin, who wears the same number at Arsenal, and plays in the same position, had agreed to give it up following his arrival.
"Yeah, I already talked to him -- he'd take another number," he joked.