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TRANSFER TARGET Mikel Arteta's comments on Shkodran Mustafi's future hint at a move amid Liverpool links

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Shkodran Mustafi has been linked with Liverpool (John Walton/PA)

Shkodran Mustafi has been linked with Liverpool (John Walton/PA)

Shkodran Mustafi has been linked with Liverpool (John Walton/PA)

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has confirmed his club are open to Shkodran Mustafi leaving the club ahead of Monday's transfer deadline, amid increasing speculation that he could be on his way to Liverpool.

With just six months left on his Arsenal contract, the Gunners are keen to recoup some money on the 28-year-old German this month, with Serie A side Lazio also being linked with Mustafi.

Yet after Joel Matip injured ankle ligaments in Liverpool's win at Tottenham on Thursday and midfielder turned make-shift centre-back Fabinho was ruled out of that game due to injury, Jurgen Klopp's injury crisis has reached breaking point.

With the transfer deadline fast approaching on Monday, Liverpool now have no senior centre-back available after Matip joined Virgin van Dijk and Joe Gomez on the long-term injury list.

While Liverpool's owners have hinted they are not keen to make any signings this month due to the financial pressures created by the Covid-19 pandemic, the depth of their defensive crisis suggests that policy could change and appears to be a viable option for Klopp.

"We are having conversations internally with the player and agent," said Arteta on Mustafi. "We will see what the right solution is for this one as well.

"We are monitoring the situation, I cannot say much more than that. We have conversations ongoing and we'll see what's the best decision at the end of the transfer window."

Liverpool may also be tempted to revive their interest in Lille's Sven Botman, after initial approaches for the defender earlier this month were not followed up with a firm offer due to financial considerations.

Yet it appears manager Liverpool boss Klopp is now keen to push his emergency button to sign a defender after problems afflicting Matip and Fabinho.

"You can imagine that we can think about everything. We think the whole time it's about doing the right thing," he said after the 3-1 win at Tottenham on Thursday. "I'm not picky but we need to find the right player."

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