Per Mertesacker hasn’t played for Arsenal so far this season – a knee ligament injury has him out until the New Year, probably. But he’s still around, don’t you worry, and he’d like to still be a part of what this team may be building. But, of course, not yet.
I know that I need to allow myself time. The more time I allow my knee, the longer I’ll be able to play football. I can increase the workload already and I am no longer in pain. I believe that I can reach a level again on which I am important for the team. I have the feeling that this is not the end.
Of course, this is the last year on Mertesacker’s contract, so it could very well be the end. If so, he’s readying himself for that too – but not yet.
I look at the perspectives for me and my family, and I think that I’ll intensify those thoughts from January on. That’s also the time when you can listen to other things [offers] when your contract is expiring.
As a longtime defender and fan of Per, I hope he stays, but honestly with the advent of Shkodran Mustafi, the evident promise of Rob Holding, the hopefully coming resurgence of Calum Chambers, and even the return of Gabriel, he might not be needed. Still though he can offer a veteran’s expertise and leadership, and that’s not nothing.