Unai Emery has confirmed that Arsenal would like to sell Mohamed Elneny and Shkodran Mustafi before the end of the European transfer window.
The pair are yet to feature this season and have not even been named in a matchday squad, with Emery confirming earlier this month that he had already told Mustafi he is free to depart the club.
Elneny has attracted interest from clubs in Turkey – Fenerbahce held talks over a move in May and June without any success – whilst Mustafi has been linked with a move to Roma. The German has been available for transfer for several years without successfully attracting a bidder.
football.london understands that while Arsenal’s preference would be a permanent sale of the error-prone centre-back, recouping as much of the £35million they paid Valencia for 2016 as possible, they will be prepared to consider a loan deal if necessary.
Emery has left both players in no doubt that they will not feature regularly in his Arsenal side and is encouraging them to be “protagonists” elsewhere.
“We have now some players, they know their situation,” Emery said.
“For example, Elneny and Mustafi know their position in the squad and really I want the players to be happy here, I want the players to be protagonists here.
“Last year with Mustafi and Mo, when they didn’t play they weren’t happy and I spoke with them a lot of times last year and this pre-season and I think it is positive for them to leave and sign for another team where they can be protagonists and be happy and continue their careers.
“They are very big players but for one circumstance or another, they are going to have less chances to show their capacity or to be happy with us and the minutes they play in matches.
“But they know the situation and really, really I am wishing the best for them and I think now the best for them is to be protagonists in another team and sign and to get another challenge for them with another team.
“We respect them, they are training with us, but they know their situation and only I am wishing the best for them.”
Mustafi is effectively Arsenal’s fifth-choice centre-back whilst Elneny has Granit Xhaka, Lucas Torreira, Dani Ceballos, Matteo Guendouzi and Joe Willock ahead of him in the pecking order.
Premier League clubs are unable to sign players as the transfer window closed before the start of the season. However clubs in Italy, Spain, France, Germany and Turkey are able to sign players until September 2.
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