Three Replacements For Shkodran Mustafi Who Arsenal Can Target
Arsenal were the most consistent Premier League side to qualify for Champions League until last season when they finished 5th in the league and failed to grab a place in this prestigious European competition. The Gunners, however, are now competing in the Europa League – a second-fiddle tournament that top outfits prefer to stay away from in order to avoid the congestion of fixtures.
Arsenal are also going through a similar concern as Arsene Wenger, the Gunners boss, is sweating over the future of his star duo Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil who have only a few months left on their current deal. Also, the profile of Europa League did not help much in attracting Thomas Lemar despite agreeing on a hefty fee with his current employers AS Monaco.
Wenger further failed to strengthen his backline and stopped Shkodran Mustafi from departing who was close to joining Serie A heavyweights Inter Milan. But the 25-year-old German centre-back is now ruled out for months following a suspected ‘muscle tear’ against Azerbaijan in Germany’s World Cup qualifier game.
The Gunners are now only left with Laurent Koscielny. two young centre-backs Calum Chambers and Rob Holding along with the experienced and versatile Nacho Monreal, who has settled down well as one of the members of the back-3. Veteran German centre-back Per Mertesacker is still available for selection but has not played much football for more than a year now.
Wenger now desperately needs to find a replacement for Mustafi when the transfer window reopens in January and should consider these players.
Stefan de Vrij
Current Club: SS Lazio
The Dutchman has entered the final year of his contract and has not shown any intention of extending his stay with the Serie A outfit. He is regular for his club and country and has been monitored by Premier League big guns. He missed almost the entire 2015-16 season with a knee injury but came back last season with more determination.
De Vrij will be available for a cut-price deal as Lazio, his current suitors, would rather entertain a transfer business in January rather than losing him for free in the summer. Arsenal must grab this opportunity and acquire the central defender who is still young and has plenty to offer.
Current Club: AS Roma
Manolas was allowed to leave Roma in the summer and the Italian club agreed on a fee of £30m with Russian outfit Zent St. Petersburg. Manolas, however, did not turn up for the medical as he did not agree to personal terms with the Russian outfit as he wanted to be paid in Euros instead of Roubles. He has reclaimed a regular status for the Serie A runners-up and already made 138 appearances since joining them for a €15 million fee back in the summer of 2014. He has earned 32 senior caps for Greece and reportedly available for a fee of £ 26 mil. Arsenal
He has now reclaimed regular status for the Serie A runners-up and has made 138 appearances since joining them back in the summer of 2014. He has also earned 32 senior caps for Greece. Arsenal have been linked with him in previous windows and it’s time to make it happen in the upcoming one.
Current Club: Atletico Madrid
Gimenez was acquired by the Spanish heavyweights back in 2013 from Danubio and gained recognition in 2014 FIFA World Cup as a 19-year-old deputising for skipper Diego Lugano against England. He soon got promoted to the Rojiblancos’ senior squad and Diego Simone, their Argentine gaffer, handed him enough first-team opportunities alongside fellow countryman Diego Godin in central defence.
However, the arrival of Stefan Savic sent him down the pecking order and his game-time was limited last term. Gimenez will thus be open to a transfer in order to gain regular playing minutes prior to next year’s World Cup competition. He is only 22 and despite being indisciplined at times, the Uruguayan international holds a bright future ahead. Arsenal must come up with a realistic offer if they wish to clinch a quality recruit.