Why Shkodran Mustafi Will Join Chelsea, Not Arsenal
If you watched Chelsea’s final preseason game, you would have seen some excellent attacking football from them, and you would have seen the gaping hole in their defense as well. This hole was so apparent at times, I was talking to the TV quite a bit. Something I normally don’t do, especially in a friendly.
With the market still open for 3 more weeks, it would be a surprise to not see Chelsea bring in a first team quality center back. Someone that can play the ball from the back, and someone who still has potential to grow and learn Antonio Conte’s system.
Chelsea has been linked with Koulibaly from Napoli for the entirety of the transfer window, but the sale of their prized striker – Higuain – to Juventus, have made them even more reluctant to sell now, more so than before.
Chelsea have been linked with the signing of Shkodran Mustafi and report claim the German has missed Valencia’s training today. Arsenal have been linked with him for the entirety of the transfer window, like Chelsea with Koulibaly. But now as Chelsea’s eyes wonder else ware, some are beginning to wonder if Chelsea’s new target is Mustafi now that he is missing training.
Even without Chelsea playing Champions League football this season, they still have the allure and power to make this signing happen. Most people are aware of Chelsea’s ambitions, and know that they are and will continue to be title contenders, and push for Champions League every season. They were able to sign N’Golo Kante from last year’s champions and Champions League contenders this season, Leicester City. This signing was no small feat, as many teams were looking to sign him after his breakthrough season. Arsenal, Real Madrid and PSG were all earmarked as potential suitors, and some of those clubs are capable of paying more to Kante, yet he chose Chelsea. Missing out on one year of Champions League apparently isn’t as big of a deal as some of us thought.
So will Chelsea ability to sign a centre back be affected by the fact they won’t be playing in the Champions league this season? The resounding answer would have to be no. And now that we see clubs going for Mustafi with more pressure, hence missing practice, this is a sign that Mustafi may be looking for an exit.
But can Chelsea beat Arsenal to this potentially huge signing? Some might say Arsenal have the edge. They have Champions League football, and probably Per Mertesacker whispering all the good Gooner tales in his ear too. Not to mention all of Arsenal’s starting center backs are now injured, we will see Wenger pursue this with much more veracity. With how this market has gone this year though, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him going to the other London club – Chelsea.
If Chelsea can bring in Kante from under the noses of teams like Real Madrid and PSG, it wouldn’t be a hard stretch to believe they could do it to Arsenal for Mustafi in the coming weeks.