Shkodran Mustafi might be following in the footsteps of Sokratis Papastathopoulos, as a contract termination is reported to be in the works. Mustafi, who has not appeared for Arsenal since Boxing Day, has six months remaining on his contract.
Shkodran Mustafi in Discussions to Terminate Contract
Ending Contract Early Makes Arsenal Departure Easier
According to Football.London, Mustafi’s representatives are seeking moves away. However, the financial impacts of the coronavirus make potential suitors less likely to bid for him. The £35 million signing from Valencia four-and-a-half years ago would still command a notable transfer fee.
German teammate Mesut Ozil also departed the Emirates this month via a contract termination. With Mustafi being out of Mikel Arteta’s plans, the 28-year-old needs to join a side where he is guaranteed consistent first-team football. The former Valencia centre-back knows, to stand any chance of playing with Germany at the European Championships, he will need to play significantly more.
Interest From Spain and Italy
Despite offering Mustafi a new contract in the summer, Arsenal know keeping hold of Mustafi’s wages is pointless. Even though terminating his contract sacrifices any potential transfer fee, the wage relief is enough to make the move considerable. For Mustafi, there is no shortage of interest – especially if the termination does indeed occur.
Barcelona had talks with Mustafi’s representatives in December. Afterwards, Barcelona rejected the idea that they would approach the German. Nonetheless, talks were opened, and a free transfer for Mustafi might reignite interest.
The more likely team to secure his signature, according to the initial report by Football.London, is Lazio. The Italian side’s defensive record is mediocre. Currently sitting in seventh place, the team know they need a couple of reinforcements if they are to continue pursuing the Champions League places. There is no indication Mustafi would reject a move to Lazio.
Arsenal’s stance on Mustafi and whether his contract will officially be terminated is to be clarified in the coming days. Come the end of January, Mustafi is more likely than not going to be plying his trade elsewhere.