Cutting Ties With Aubameyang Could Secure Top Four Spot For Arsenal

Cutting Ties With Aubameyang Could Secure Top Four Spot For Arsenal
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With only days to go in the January transfer window, Arsenal are no closer to solving their much-publicised crisis with star striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. But, that hasn’t stopped the best betting sites pricing up a move away from the Emirates Stadium for the former Gunners captain.

Aubameyang fell out with Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta all the way back at the start of December after he was left out of the squad for his side’s 2-1 defeat to Everton at Goodison Park. Arteta confirmed the reason for the Gabonese player’s absence was because of a breach of club disciplinary rules, and so severe was Aubameyang’s discretion that he was also stripped of the team’s captaincy.

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He has not played for Arsenal since, and may have been hoping the African Cup of Nations would provide him with some respite from his ongoing issues.

But, Aubameyang was sent home early from the tournament, without even playing a game, as tests discovered he had heart lesions following a bout of Covid-19. However, subsequent checks have led to the player declaring himself to be “completely healthy”.

The hits just keep on coming for him though, as after returning to Arsenal for treatment he was left in London by Arteta as the rest of the available first team jetted off to Dubai for a training camp.

History May Have Left Arsenal Wary

While it seems best for all parties to just call it quits and go their separate ways, you can understand Arsenal’s reluctance to let Aubameyang go. After all, they have been burned in the past by allowing their prized assets to leave the club.

Just look at Robin van Persie, Ashley Cole and Cesc Fabregas for examples of that.

But, this could be a different case as Aubameyang is clearly causing disruption in what otherwise appears to be a cohesive young unit that Arteta has built in his two years at the helm.

The Gunners now sit within striking distance of returning to Champions League football - something which their board and supporters utterly crave - so, do they really need the distraction of Aubameyang right now?

One person who felt Aubameyang was not playing up to his usual standards before he was booted from the squad is Arsenal legend Emmanuel Petit, and when asked his thoughts on the issue he wasted no time tackling it.

“Mikel Arteta did exactly what everyone expected with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang,” Petit told

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“I don't want to show disrespect for Aubameyang, because I believe he is a great player. But, for the last few months he hasn't been himself. Something has changed in his mind. I don't know if it's related to the club, the manager or the way he is living in his private life. But, we are not seeing the same Aubameyang now that we saw a couple of years ago.

“I believe Arteta made the right decision on Aubameyang and he made his mark in the dressing room with the choice he made. To leave your captain out of a game and then seemingly put him on the transfer market is a very strong message to your dressing room.”

Youth Is The Way To Go For The Gunners

With so many of their players now in the running for PFA honours, Arsenal are now in a much better place than when Arteta took over a squad in disarray after the Unai Emery-era.

Such has been their form this term that football betting sites have them right in the mix at 5/2 to finish in the top four of the Premier League, something they haven’t done since the 2015/16 season.

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While Petit was full of praise for Arsenal's new crop of youngsters, he couldn't help but return to some frustrations he had with Aubameyang’s recent performances for The Gunners.

“The likes of Gabriel Martinelli, Bukayo Saka, Martin Odegaard and Emile Smith-Rowe are showing responsibility on the pitch and are performing well,” said the former Premier League winner with Arsenal.

“That is not the case with Aubameyang at the moment and I'm not saying because he was the skipper that he has to be an example, because I've never quite understood what that means, you can not play well in some games and you can have some bad behaviour off the field. But, Aubameyang has to be a leader during the matches.

“As the top earner at the club, like Aubameyang is, you have a reasonability to your teammates and you need to show that on the pitch. That is why I believe the young guns are taking charge of the team now.”

Aubameyang Needs To Find Himself Again

Whether he remains at Arsenal or not, it’s a crying shame to see a player of Aubameyang's calibre not playing up to the standard that he is capable of. We are talking about a striker who netted 22 Premier League goals in consecutive seasons (2018/19 and 2019/20) after all.

Such has been the drop off in Aubameyang’s form since he signed a bumper new contract with the north London club in September 2020, it has led fans, pundits and now even Petit to question his motivation these days.

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However, Petit closed by encouraging Aubameyang to find his passion for the game once more.

He said: “Aubameyang needs to understand that you have to show a high level week-after-week and the fact he signed a new contract for big, big money may not be related to his current issue, but I will say the coincidence is huge.

“Straight after he signed that contact, he wasn't the same player anymore.

“It doesn't matter if his future is with Arsenal or somewhere else now, he needs to understand he has to go back to the player he was, with the same motivation and mentality that he had. Money is huge, but he has to get his anger back!”

You can find Aubameyang at 8/1 currently with BetVictor to sign with Barcelona before the January transfer window closes.