Whilst Arsenal loanee William Saliba continues to impress in France, Shkodran Mustafi’s start to life back in his home country has gotten off to an altogether rocky start.
The major transfer news at the Emirates early last month of course came in the form of confirmation that Saliba had departed north London for the 2nd-half of the campaign.
In a post across the club’s social media platforms, Arsenal announced that their out-of-favour young stopper had returned to his home country with OGC Nice, on a 6-month loan:
🗞 William Saliba has joined Ligue 1 side Nice on loan for the remainder of the season
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) January 4, 2021
This of course came with Saliba having failed to garner a single first-team appearance under Mikel Arteta over the opening half of the campaign.
Despite his struggles for game-time at the Emirates, though, Saliba has since been plugged directly into the backline of his new club.
The 19-year-old has earned starts in all of Nice’s last 6 outings, helping the club to a solitary clean sheet along the way.
And though Les Aiglons, all told, have endured a largely hit-and-miss spell of form over the course of this stretch, Saliba, for the most part, has impressed.
The young Frenchman has continued to showcase flashes of his unquestionable potential, at the heart of a less than solid Nice backline.
And, as evidenced this weekend, such talents have certainly not gone unappreciated on the part of his loan club’s fanbase.
This comes amid confirmation this afternoon that Saliba has been voted as Nice’s Player of the Month for January, on the back of his first month with the Ligue 1 outfit:
🦅 Aiglon @credit_agri_PCA de janvier
— OGC Nice (@ogcnice) February 6, 2021
Mustafi’s Schalke struggling
Whilst Saliba continues to go about getting his career back on track, however, as outlined above, another of Arsenal’s ex stars has today gotten his start to life away from the Emirates off to an altogether underwhelming start.
The player in question? Shkodran Mustafi.
German stopper Mustafi was one of a number of defenders to depart north London last month, linking up with Schalke in his home country.
Somewhat surprisingly, the 28-year-old, despite having not taken to the pitch for some time, was then handed his debut from the off on Saturday, as the Bundesliga basement dwellers played host to RB Leipzig.
To this point, however, the clash has proven one to forget for the former Arsenal man, with Schalke staring yet another defeat in the face, and Mustafi having been responsible for the concession of Die Knappen’s first of the day:
Schalke concede just before the break – decent first half defensively but Shkodran Mustafi allows Nordi Mukiele a free header from a corner.
— Get German Football News (@GGFN_) February 6, 2021
Joe Willock off to a flyer, but Newcastle’s woes mount as key pair – including Callum Wilson – limp off vs Southampton
This article was edited by Josh Barker.
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