Arsenal appear on course to lose the services of a once-dependable defender after the player’s father spoke of his anticipated summer exit.
The Gunners currently sit 11th in the Premier League table, with more questions than answers emerging over Mikel Arteta’s methods.
The Spaniard has successfully stiffened the resolve of Arsenal’s once-shaky defence, but it appears to have come at a cost.
Three defeats from their last four have been registered in the Premier League, with Arsenal failing to trouble the scoresheet in each encounter.
Nevertheless, their new-found sturdiness with summer recruit Gabriel Magalhaes pulling the strings at the back has pleased fans.
One consequence of his arrival, however, has been centre-back Shkodran Mustafi being pushed further down Arteta’s pecking order.
Upon returning from injury, Mustafi has had to play second fiddle to Arteta favourites Gabriel, Rob Holding and David Luiz.
The German, 28, is in the final year of his contract at The Emirates. As a result, he will be free to negotiate his next move come January.
An October report clamed Mustafi is unlikely to pen fresh terms if offered. Though it was later reported he would consider the club’s proposal should one be made.
That scenario now appears unlikely after Mustafi’s father hinted a summer exit as a free agent is in their current thinking.
Arsenal eyeing Unai Emery target
Meanwhile, Arsenal have reignited their interest in RB Leipzig midfielder Christopher Nkunku, according to reports.
Nkunku was linked with Arsenal back when Unai Emery was in charge of the club. Emery had worked with the youngster at his former club Paris Saint-Germain, and was keen for a reunion.
It has proven to be a wise move for the 22-year-old, who provided five goals and 13 assists in his first Bundesliga season. Only Bayern Munich’s Thomas Muller and Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho made more assists in the German top flight last season.
Now, a report from Bild (via the Metro) suggests Nkunku is back on the radar of several top English clubs. The newspaper names Arsenal as one team who are keeping tabs on him.