Arsenal are said to be confident of landing Shkodran Mustafi before the end of the summer transfer window despite talks coming to a standstill between Valencia and the Gunners in recent days. The two clubs are yet to agree on a fee for the defender with both unwilling to make a compromise on their respective valuations.
According to Sky Sports, the player has already agreed personal terms with the north London club and is keen to make the switch, but Valencia will not allow him to leave unless Arsenal meet their valuation. Arsene Wenger is desperate to sign a defender following injuries to Per Mertesacker and Gabriel Paulista and has made Mustafi his prime target.
The Arsenal duo have been ruled out for four months and eight weeks respectively, leaving the side short at the back. Inexperienced duo Calum Chambers and Rob Holding are the only fit central defenders at the manager's disposal owing to Laurent Koscielny's lack of match fitness. The Gunners lost their season opener against Liverpool 4-3 and face reigning champions Leicester City on Saturday (20 August) and Wenger was looking to add an experienced defender before the game, but according to Goal, despite the north Londoners being confident of completing the transfer, it is unlikely to be completed in the coming days owing to the stalemate in terms of the fee.
The player's father Kujtim, who is said to be holding negotiations on his son's behalf, has confirmed that he is still a Valencia player, and has refused to provide an update on the talks between the two clubs, he told Goal: "He [Shkodran] is a Valencia player. This is the only important thing for now. I cannot confirm anything [regarding how close a deal is]. This is a matter concerning only Valencia and my son."
The Mirror understands that Mustafi, who returned to pre-season training after an extended break, is currently training alone in a bid to get back to full fitness, while the club are also keen to avoid any injuries which could jeopardise a possible move. Valencia have confirmed that they have to sell more than one player this summer to meet Financial Fair Play regulations but are still adamant that Gunners meet their valuation said to be around €25m (£21.6m, $28.1m).
Wenger is believed to have identified replacements if the Mustafi deal fails, with the London Evening Standard suggesting possible alternative targets in Bayer Leverkusen's Omer Toprak and Fenerbahce's Simon Kjaer.