Why Arsenal should offload Shkodran Mustafi amidst Lazio links
According to LazioPress (h/t The Sun), Lazio have begun talks with Arsenal regarding the transfer of Shkodran Mustafi. The report also says that the £78,750-a-week star’s agent and father are in negotiations and only a final few details are left for the transfer to be completed.
The 28-year-old German defender started his youth career at FV Bebra and then moved to SV Rotenburg. In 2006, he joined Hamburger SV’s youth setup. After 3 years, Everton recruited him for their youth team.
He made just a single appearance for the senior team before Sampdoria signed him in 2012. However, it was only from the following season that Mustafi started getting games. He made over 50 appearances for the Italian side before making the move to Valencia.
At Valencia, he played 81 games, scoring 6 goals and assisting 3 (source – Transfermarkt). Finally, he made the move to Arsenal in 2016 and since then, it’s been a mixed bag for him. He has made over 140 appearances for the Gunners, scoring 9 goals and assisting 5.
Mustafi was a regular part of Germany’s youth teams but has been restricted to just the 20 appearances for the senior side. He was a part of their FIFA World Cup squad in 2014.
Should Arsenal keep or sell him?
Mustafi has had a tough time for Arsenal since joining them. There have been moments of solid defending but largely it has been a case of sub-par showings. He has been too error-prone for a defender of a club of Arsenal’s stature.
With the new arrivals of Gabriel Magalhaes and William Saliba, Arsenal have 8 centre-backs on their roster. It is clear that few of them should well be shipped off before the transfer deadline. Among those names must be Shkodran Mustafi.
Along with Gabriel and Saliba, the likes of Rob Holding and David Luiz are likely to be involved in the first-team given how Arteta has picked his team so far.
Arsenal should sell Mustafi to Lazio even if they receive a half decent offer. Selling Mustafi is unlikely to cause much of a problem given the huge depth of players in that position.
Mustafi would also benefit from the move as he is not expected to be a part of Mikel Arteta’s plans for the season. At Lazio, he would get a chance to play more and since he has already played in the Serie A, it won’t be much of an issue to adjust to the style of play.