Arsenal manager Unai Emery has revealed that he has had talks with Shkodran Mustafi about the defender leaving the Emirates this summer.
Since the Spaniard took over from Arsene Wenger a year ago, it’s fair to say that Mustafi has had quite enough opportunities to convince the new boss that his future lies with the Gunners, and there can now be very little doubt that he has failed to do so. Laurent Koscielny was out injured for the first half of last season, Rob Holding for the second. Even the absence of Hector Bellerin at right-back provided the German with a chance as Emery made it quite clear towards the end of the campaign that he wasn’t counting on Stephan Lichtsteiner anymore. But nothing Mustafi has done on the pitch seems to have helped his cause.
Apparently, Emery spoke to the centre-back on the subject on three occasions – at the end of last season, at the start of pre-season, and once again a few weeks ago. The window in England has closed, but it is still open for the rest of Europe, and there are certainly clubs who could do with an experienced defender such as Mustafi.
He may have no place in Emery’s plans, but he has the ability to perform well. Maybe another system, another coach and a different pace of the game would suit him better. His contract with Arsenal runs for two more years, but it’s fair to assume he wouldn’t be very expensive, given the situation.
Meanwhile, Arsenal have parted ways with captain Laurent Koscielny in rather controversial circumstances and brought in David Luiz from Chelsea to replace him, adding some much-needed experience to the troubled back line. The Brazilian spoke about his decision to move to the north of the city, expressing his feelings that his cycle at Stamford Bridge had come to an end, and that has he wasn’t afraid to take on a new challenge at another big club.