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Arsenal open talks to sign Shkodran Mustafi



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Arsene Wenger has addressed the need to sign a central defender following a long-term injury to German defender Per Mertesacker. Despite bringing in Rob Holding from Bolton, the Gunners are looking to sign a top quality defender ahead of the 2016-17 season.

According to reports from Sky Sports, Arsenal are in talks to sign German defender Shkodran Mustafi from Valencia but no offer has been made to the La Liga club.

Mustafi joined Valencia in 2014 from Sampdoria and has made over 60 La Liga appearances. He has been a key player for Los Che over the past two seasons and impressed at centre-half during Euro 2016 in France.

The 24-year-old defender previously was an Everton academy graduate but he left the Merseyside club in 2012 after failing to step up the grade at Goodison Park.

Sky claims that Mustafi’s agent is expected to fly to Spain to discuss the transfer fee with Valencia. The German international has a £42.1m release clause, but Arsenal are hoping to sign him for £25.3m plus a further £8.4m in add-ons.

Like Arsenal, their London rivals Chelsea are also in need of a central defender as Antonio Conte is looking to sign a long replacement of skipper John Terry.

The Blues have been heavily linked with a move for Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly but the Londoners have other targets as well with Mustafi certainly being one of them. It remains to be seen whether Arsenal or Chelsea make a formal bid for the German defender in the coming days or not.