I think that everyone connected with Arsenal would have liked to have the Germany international defender Shkodran Mustafi fit again and available for our next Premier League match, especially as it is going to be on the road against the runaway league leaders Man City.
However, Arsene Wenger has given us the bad news about the injury hit centre back, with sports injury website physioroom.com reporting that the German is not due back in action for the Gunners until November 18th, when we play the home version of the north London derby. That will be a good game to have Mustafi back for, but it will mean that he will have missed this whole period of club action between two international breaks.
The question is, will Arsenal be able to cope against Pep Guardiola’s free scoring City side without free scoring our most expensive defensive transfer ever? Assuming there are no more problems to hit the Gunners in the meantime, we can be pretty sure that it will be a back three of Koscielny and Monreal either side of Mertesacker up at the Etihad and that back line has not been great in the last two games.
However, I do believe that they have got what it takes to give City the blues, especially as the nature of our opponents will surely sharpen up their focus. It is also likely to mean that Arsenal are more defensively disciplined and sitting deeper, which helps to avoid the well known problem of the BFG and his lack of pace.
Per has bags of experience and defensive quality and we need him to show it all at the weekend, but that is exactly what he did in his last big game against EPL rivals, when he helped us to beat Chelsea at Wembley to lift the FA cup. So is the loss of Mustafi really such a problem?