After a poor start to the season, Arsenal managed to build some semblance of form with wins over Cardiff and West Ham to finally get some points on the board.
Arsenal are going through a transitional stage and most have fans have expected that there are going to be plenty of mistakes early on in the season. Petr Cech’s build-up play from the back has received heavy criticism so far this season.
After so many years of being a goalkeeper who’s great at commanding his box and making great saves, Cech has been asked to do something he’s never really done throughout his career. Moreover, the experienced goalkeeper hasn’t been helped by his defenders, although Shkodran Mustafi has defended the goalkeeper.
Recently, one of our regular writers dipped into Twitter to find that a lot of Arsenal fans have singled out Mustafi for praise this season. Although Mustafi scored against Cardiff City last weekend, the former World Cup winner is still a liability at the back and without Laurent Koscielny next to him, he’s a massive weak point in Arsenal’s defence.
So far this season, Arsenal have improved but at the back with Mustafi, the Gunners are constantly shooting themselves in the foot. A front foot defender, Mustafi’s insistence on pressing forward to try and steal the ball at times has allowed Arsenal to be exposed. Too many times have Arsenal fans seen the German defender press forward, only for him not to win the ball and allow the striker in behind.
Since he’s made the move, Mustafi has steadily regressed. At first, he looked like a solid defender who was good with the ball and complimented Koscielny. Furthermore, he had the recovery speed to play in a league that places so much emphasis on quick transitions and pace.
When Koscielny returns, it will be interesting to see if Emery partners Sokratis with the experienced Frenchman. Frankly, Mustafi just isn’t good enough to start for Arsenal going forward. In a team that is going to go through some tough periods, Arsenal need a defender who is reliable and a leader at the back. Mustafi just simply isn’t that.
Arsenal fans – thoughts? Let us know below!