Mustafi to be fined: Arsenal defender Shkodran Mustafi could face punishment for making controversial political hand gesture against Cardiff City.
Arsenal’s Sunday afternoon ended on a happy note as they grabbed a second successive win against Cardiff City. Shkodran Mustafi, Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette were all on target in a 3-2 victory over the Bluebirds. The Germany international opened the scoring against the team from the Welsh capital as his header found the back of the net following Granit Xhaka’s cross.
He ran towards the Swiss international celebrating, which is something that has led to controversy. While doing so, Mustafi made a hand signal that possibly meant the double eagle on Albania’s flag. This is something that earned Granit Xhaka a fine during the World Cup and is seen as a racist gesture, which could put the former Valencia defender into a deep mess.
Shkodran Mustafi has earlier said about how he feels about his relationship and background of being Albanian, a country which his grandfather was forced to flee away from to earn a living in Germany. Speaking to the Daily Mail back in 2016, he explained that he feels it is hard for people to relate to the difficulty of immigration unless they have actually lived through it.
“You have to understand when people who come into the UK and Germany that you don’t know what this person saw in his life before,” he said.
“When I go back to Albania you have six-year-olds who do not go to school and have to work. There are no schools. So they come to this country and it is difficult. We all need to understand the differences. It is complicated but it needs understanding.”
The controversy around the celebration began when it first featured in the World Cup when Switzerland turned a game around to win against Serbia. Granit Xhaka and Xherdan Shaqiri were the two men who quizzed, to which the Liverpool man replied as an emotion. He said: “I think in football you have always emotions. You can see what I did and I think it’s just emotion. I’m very happy to score this goal. It’s not more. I think we don’t have to speak about this now.” Switzerland’s coach, Vladimir Petkovic, added: “You should never mix politics and football. It’s clear that emotions show up and that’s how things happen.
“I think we all together need to steer away from politics in football and we should focus on this sport as a beautiful game and something that brings people together.”
Former Liverpool and Switzerland player Stephane Henchoz also recently spoke out about Xhaka and Shaqiri’s celebrations, telling Blick: “The double-headed eagle has no business in the Swiss national team.
“When I was in Liverpool, I went to every practice with the ‘ball in my stomach’ knowing that if I missed a pass, I would get burned by the coach.
“In Switzerland, if you miss a pass, it does not matter. You will take the next one.