Shkodran Mustafi has been a figure of fun and derision for the majority of his Arsenal career, as the German defender has managed to drop clanger after howler, week-in, week-out for the Gunners.
But new Arsenal coach and apparent miracle worker Mikel Arteta has revitalised the 27-year-old’s career at the Emirates Stadium, helping him to recapture his impressive form of old in recent months. Unfortunately for Mustafi, his progress has been slowed by the coronavirus outbreak, which has brought all football to a standstill.
And the defender has been quick to recognise the role Arteta has played in his upturn in form, insisting to Sky Sports in Germany that the Spaniard’s style of play ‘really fits’ his defensive attributes.
But Mustafi also admitted that he is unsure on where his future lies, stating that ‘there are still many question marks’ over whether he will remain with the Gunners next year.
“I’ve played more regularly under Mikel Arteta, also in the Premier League. That has really helped me. I feel very good.
“I understand his style of football, how he likes to play, that really fits me.
“The way he is at his age, that has really surprised me, I don’t know if after four years, I could be that serious and have a charisma like his to lead a team.
“He is managing that very well. I feel that in this short amount of time I already learned some new things that help my game.
“I can imagine continuing to play for him. But we still don’t know about the future. There are still many question marks.”
Despite making clear progress since Arteta’s arrival in December, Arsenal remain ninth in the Premier League table, eight points behind fourth-place Chelsea in the hunt for Champions League qualification.
Mustafi has featured heavily under the new boss, having made only one Premier League appearance this term for the Gunners, prior to the appointment of the former Manchester City assistant coach.