Arsenal have completed the signing of Germany defender Shkodran Mustafi from Valencia for a reported fee of £35 million.
Mustafi, 24, is the third major signing for manager Arsene Wenger this summer after central midfielder Granit Xhaka joined in May from Gladbach and £17m striker Lucas Perez arrived from Deportivo La Coruna on Tuesday, taking the club’s spending to over £90m in this transfer window.
The German solves a defensive crisis for Wenger’s men after Per Mertesacker and Gabriel Paulista were injured in preseason. While 20-year-old Rob Holding has impressed in the team’s first three games, Mustafi is expected to earn an immediate starting role alongside Laurent Koscielny in Arsenal’s back four.
Mustafi will join up with his new teammates after the international break, and both he and Perez should be available for Arsenal’s next Premier League game against Southampton on Sept. 10.
That’s right, it’s officially official! #GunnerShkodranhttps://t.co/DbX63Iyp5h
– Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) August 30, 2016
Arsène Wenger told the club’s official website: “He is at the right age. He has good experience. He is a very focused player who can play with the ball as well. We have taken a great player but have prepared well for the future.”
The defender established himself as one of Valencia’s top players last season and already has plenty of international experience, helping Germany win the World Cup in 2014 and also playing at the European Championship this summer. He said on Sunday that fellow Germany international Mesut Ozil had helped convince him to join the Gunners.
“He told me everything I wanted to know. Everything was positive, so I was convinced very fast. It did not take much,” Mustafi told Sky Sports Germany.
“I have always loved Arsenal, I like how they play here, it is not typical English. The game here is more like in Spain and with the German national team, keeping the ball on the grass, so it was easy to convince me.”
With Mustafi signing for the Gunners, Calum Chambers has completed his season-long loan move to Middlesbrough.