The Premier League fixtures are around the corner and it is safe to say that the London side Arsenal will be facing one of the toughest possible opponents in the opening day of the leave. The Gunners will be welcoming the all confident Liverpool side at the Emirates and a nail-biting encounter is expected. This surely is a big game for both the sides, but the Gunners will be having a major setback in the fixture as they will be without most of their regular defenders for this big clash.
Soon after Wenger lost Mertesacker due to his injury, the French manager, Arsene Wenger, stated that he would have to find an option for the spot in the market. He said:
“We are still in the market for players, whether it is at the front or the back. Unfortunately we are not alone.
“The best way to conclude transfers is not to talk about it, but we are in the market. Do I think we will sign an experienced central defender before the season starts? Yes, I do.”
Latest reports are claiming that the Gunner are targeting Valencia’s defender Shkodran Mustafi and the Daily Mail even reported that the club will make a £30million bid for the player, who currently is a most wanted personnel in the entire Europe.
We personally believe that this German-French (Mustafi-Koscielny) centre back pairing could really work wonders, but before that, we would love to compare both the star defenders and will try to figure it out that who amongst both had a better 2015-16 season.
Mustafi vs Koscielny: (stats taken from Squawka)
Both the defensive masters were one of the key figures for their respective sides last season and for the starters, let us tell you that Mustafi played 30 games for Valencia last season (in La Liga), while Koscielny played 33. In their number of appearances, the German scored two goals and created 4 chances, while the French star scored four and created eight chances.
While talking about the individual performances; Mustafi was named as the man of the match 4 times in total, while Arsenal’s general was awarded the same five times (In the domestic league itself). When talking about the distribution, we have a clear winner in the name of Koscielny, as the Frenchman averaged a passing accuracy of 87% (completing 1442 passes), and Mustafi only averaged 81% (completing 1090 passes).
When it comes to defending the lines, Arsenal’s centre-half has clinched the victory by whiskers as he managed to win 54% of his average duels (winning 103 out of 160 headed duels), while the German managed to win 53% (winning 87 out of 120 headed duels). Both averaged 11 defensive actions per game, which is fairly impressive, but what comprehends both the players is their discipline on the field. The Arsenal defender, Laurent Koscielny, only received three bookings in the entire season last term, while the Valencia man was booked 14 times.
As I stated earlier, both of them can really form a great centre back pairing for the Gunners in the upcoming season, but as a winner in the game, Laurent Koscielny has really dominated the German in almost every aspect. If this transfer happens, Mustafi has lot to learn from the hard tackling French defender.