SKHODRAN MUSTAFI has given an emotional interview about the abuse he has received from Arsenal fans.
And many have taken to Twitter to express their regret after the German centre-back, 27, opened up about his tough times.
1 Shkodran Mustafi admitted he made mistakes but thinks the abuse has gone too farCredit: Reuters
This is disgraceful. Just disgraceful. Fans should be ashamed of themselves. There's nothing wrong with criticism but the abuse this guy gets is fucking ridiculous. Poor guy. Just because he's a footballer doesn't mean he's not a human being. And no human deserves such vile abuse https://t.co/B2tn8JBRGI
— Shivam Chadha 😉 (@shivster28) October 8, 2019
Mustafi has been blamed for several goals, and was even accused of stopping Arsenal fans getting to the pub on match day by blocking roads in his £200,000 Ferrari.
He told Spiegel: "In the first two years after my move to Arsenal in 2016, things went very well for me. I saw myself as a performer.
"But shortly after Christmas 2018 there was a kink. I've made a few mistakes and they've created a mess that I've never experienced before.
"I had missed three weeks injured and then went into the game [5-1 Liverpool defeat] without training with the team because the coach needed me.
"At half-time it was 1-4, I looked a few times not good and have injured myself again. Afterwards, I got a lot of negative comments from Arsenal fans on Instagram and Twitter. And articles were written in which I was harshly criticised."
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Mustafi owned up to the fact he had made mistakes but thinks the criticism was far too harsh.
He added: "I'm self-critical enough to realise that I made those mistakes. I can also deal with tough criticism.
"But the criticism has become escalated and irrational. I have become a target. At some point, people even blamed me for a defeat I had not played at all."
On the incident when Twitter saw claims he blocked a fan's path to the pub, he explained: "That was the culmination of the madness. I was not in the squad but wanted to see the game.
"On the way to the stadium, I stopped briefly and asked if I could drive through. The man said, 'Wait a minute', and then let me through.
"That's exactly where the photo must have come from. But of course I have not blocked anyone's way to the pub."
Mustafi finished his interview by insisting that turning things around with Arsenal was his main goal.
And he got plenty of support on Twitter, with one fan writing: "This literally made me cry, I'm sorry mustafi".
And another added: "I feel so sad reading this. Sorry Mustafi for all you have gone through bcos of us fans."
Once again @MustafiOfficial iam so sorry for the negative energy and abuses from me and so many @Arsenal fans worldwide today after reading ur interview I realized it went out of context and ur a human afterall with a family.#sorrymustafi
— Echikwu Desmond Omale (@desomale) October 9, 2019
Mustafi we are sorry.some of us arsenal fans like me never criticized you one day.i play FOOTBALL though not professionally.i understood everything then "down-form".thanks for staying and shutting them up.
— @IgedeBoy (@IgedeBoy2) October 9, 2019