Juventus are reportedly set to rival Inter Milan in securing a late transfer swoop for Arsenal defender Shkodran Mustafi.
According to a report by Daily Mail, Juventus and Inter Milan are battling it out to land Arsenal defender Shkodran Mustafi this summer. Inter Milan are believed to be pursuing a loan move for the German with an option of signing him permanently next season for a fee of £25 million. Juventus, on the other hand, are keen on a permanent deal.
Shkodran Mustafi joined Arsenal only last year from Valencia, for a sum of £35 million. Although he made a strong and promising start, the German failed to remain consistent on field due to a series of injury concerns, making 26 appearances for the Gunners last season, scoring twice.
Although he was a part of the starting line-up against Stoke last weekend, Mustafi looked like he was still lacking some match fitness as Arsenal succumbed to a shock defeat. It might seem surprising, though, for the Gunners to sell a defender at a time when their back line looks slightly vulnerable.
Additionally, Gabriel Paulista was sold to Valencia last week, but Arsene Wenger is holding on to Callum Chambers. Butm, the money could prove to be beneficial for Arsenal in their pursuit of Virgil van Dijk.
Perhaps that could prompt Mustafi to leave the club in search of other options. Meanwhile, Inter appear to be quite persistent in securing his signature by competing a deal before next week’s deadline.
The Nerazzurri have been quite busy in the transfer market this summer. If they manage to sign Mustafi, he would be their eighth singing in the current window. The Italian club are clearly aiming to re-build their squad, thus providing the German with the perfect opportunity to start afresh.
Meanwhile, Juventus have been closely monitoring the situation as well. Mustafi might seem like a surprise target for the Italian champions, but it is understood that manager Massimiliano Allegri is preparing to replace Leonardo Bonucci after his shock move to AC Milan.
Filling the shoes of a defender as reliable as Bonucci can prove to be quite the challenge. Moreover, Juve were considered as a club with a really solid defence last season, making it quite a strong reputation to live up to. The pace of the Italian league though, could suit Mustafi, making him a viable target.
Ultimately, a move to join Inter Milan seems like the safest option since he can take his time to ease into the team. However, he is still one of the first names on the team sheet at Arsenal, and it remains to be seen if Wenger is open to selling the player this summer.