Fenerbahce interest in Mustafi can finally end Arsenal’s misery

This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…

According to Turkish publication Aksam, Fenerbahce are interested in signing Arsenal centre-back Shkodran Mustafi this summer.

What’s the word?

The report claims the Super Lig giants are lining up a move for the Germany international and that the Turkish side’s sporting director, Damian Comolli, has already made contact with the 27-year-old’s agent.

The news of Fenerbahce’s interest comes after BBC’s David Ornstein revealed on BBC 5 Live Sport that Arsenal have been looking to offload the centre-back ever since he first signed and that Unai Emery had decided “enough was enough” after the Europa League final.

End the misery now

For far too long Mustafi’s name has just become synonymous with calamity and derision. This is a World Cup winner with Germany, consigned to being looked at as not even being worthy of Sunday League football.

His errors and mistakes have been infuriatingly similar, inspiring a horrible case of deja vu. His biggest gaffe this season came at a time when the Gunners simply couldn’t afford it, allowing Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha to waltz on through and end up costing the north London side a precious result in their race for Champions League qualification.

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The miscommunication was eerily reminiscent of the goal scored by Charlie Austin for Southampton, when the England international ghosted in from behind, when he had absolutely no right to.

In 84 Premier League appearances, the German has seen three errors directly lead to goals and has a questionable disciplinary record too. His tendency to lunge into challenges has seen him pick up 26 yellow cards and commit a total of 103 fouls – more than one a game.

Valued at £22.5m by Transfermarkt, Mustafi is at an age now where the mind-numbing errors should be virtually non-existent. But despite playing at the top level for sides like Sampdoria, Valencia and now Arsenal, the 27-year-old has shown no real sign of improvement.

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After witnessing the Gunners’ defensive struggles in a 3-1 defeat to Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium earlier this year, Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher fumed: “Mustafi has never been good enough since the day he walked in the door and that’s the reason why all the goals come down there. To see Arsenal defend like that, there’s a big job there for Unai Emery to do.”

The big job Emery has to do is getting Mustafi out the door. If Fenerbahce are willing to take a chance on the blundering defender, then the Gunners by all means should allow them to take it.

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