Alex Runarsson’s terrible error stole all the headlines but he wasn’t the only Arsenal player who had a bad game last night. Shkodran Mustafi returned to the starting lineup and the German looked far from his best.
The former Valencia man has had his critics at Arsenal over the years. He started his Gunners career in tremendous style, but his popularity decreased massively after his first season at the Emirates.
There were a lot of rumours about a potential departure before the start of last season. Arsenal could not manage that and he stayed put. Unai Emery barely used him, but Mikel Arteta’s arrival completely changed things for Mustafi.
He started 17 games under the Arsenal boss in the second half of last season and he looked good. However, an injury in the FA Cup semi-final against Manchester City ruled him out for almost three months.
Arsenal reportedly handed Mustafi a new deal in the summer. However, the German rejected the offer, and he wants to leave on a free transfer when his contract ends in about six months time. (Football London)
That, however, could change next month. SPORT revealed recently that La Liga giants Barcelona are interested in the German international. That was a shock to Arsenal fans, but Mustafi was a top centre-half during his time at Valencia, and he could well find his old form if he returns to the Spanish top-flight.
Could Mustafi really join Barcelona?
It was hard for a lot of people to believe Barcelona’s interest in Mustafi. Many felt it was just another rumour, but the defender’s agent has all but confirmed that he is in talks with the Catalans over a move next month.
Emre Ozturk told Spox: “I’m not in Barcelona because of Yusuf Demir (Rapid Wien forward), but because of Shkodran Mustafi from Arsenal, whom we also represent.”
Mustafi could well join Barca next month. It really is a shame that he lost his way at Arsenal. Constant criticism from fans and pundits seriously damaged his confidence and he has never quite been able to recover. A move away is the best thing for all parties, and what better club to join than one of the best in the world.