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Valencia star Mustafi on Arsenal radar in wake of five-month Mertesacker lay-off

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger will add a central defender to his transfer wish-list after it was confirmed Per Mertesacker will be out for 'a few months'.

The German sustained a knee ligament injury last week which has kept him from the club's pre-season tour of the USA while forcing him to undergo surgery to address the problem area.

Wenger revealed that Mertesacker will be out for a few months with some outlets indicating that perhaps the injury will see the towering centre-half sidelined for the remainder of 2016.

"We have bad news about Per," said Wenger. "He played against Lens (last week) and had a little pain but then we found out it was worse and he had surgery.

"I do not know how long he will be out but it is definitely going to be for a few months.

"We need cover. We play some young players on Thursday (against the MLS All-Stars) but with Per being out, we are now a little short and I will have to bring somebody in."

According to the Daily Mail, the Gunners could make a move for Valencia's Germany international Shkodran Mustafi to fill the void left by Mertesacker.

Arsenal are also without Laurent Koscielny, who is on an extended holiday following Euro2016, while Gabriel Paulista missed the US tour due to tonsillitis leaving only 21-year-old Calum Chambers and recent signing Rob Holding, 20, as the club's only recognised centre-backs.

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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