Arsenal are on the verge of solving their defensive crisis after Sky Germany revealed they are in official talks with Valencia over Shkodran Mustafi.
Whilst no offer for the German international has been put across the table, it’s believed the Gunners are already in the early stages of a deal with the Spanish club.
Valencia are in desperate need of a financial pick-me-up in order to get back on terms with their league rivals, and it’s believed a cut-price deal is on the cards.
According to various reports, the 24-year-old could be available for as little as £21m despite his release clause which is believed to be at least double that.
That initial figure could rise to £25m plus add-ons but at his age Wenger will be happy to gain a player that is proven and still has his best years ahead of him.
Sky Sports Germany go on to suggest that Mustafi’s agent, Ali Bulut, will fly out to Spain in order to wrap up the deal, after the centre back returned from a brief holiday spell following Euro 2016.
It’s a situation where both clubs are more than happy to get the switch over the line as quickly as possible, with Arsene Wenger facing a defensive crisis just two weeks before the opening game.
Arsenal welcome big summer spenders Liverpool to the Emirates on August 14th but will be without the familiar duo of Laurent Koscielny (holiday) and Per Mertesacker (injured).
Step in Mustafi, who’s attractive credentials coupled with a cheap price make him the number one target to act as a much-needed back up for the start of the season.
He’s definitely not the finished article however, and when thrown into the deep end of the Premier League it will be interesting to see how he reacts to the physicality of the game.
His recent outings for Germany at the Euro’s were impressive though, and having trained and played alongside Mertesacker and Mesut Ozil, he’ll already have an understanding of Arsenal life.
But like Gabriel he is already a better option than the BFG, and with five months on the sidelines it’ll be difficult to see the 31-year-old getting back into the side.