Aubameyang deal delay
Mikel Arteta, the Arsenal manager, is still waiting for the club to make a contract offer to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Arteta has said he is “optimistic” that the striker can be persuaded to remain but Arsenal’s head of football, Raul Sanllehi, has yet to present a proposal to Aubameyang, who has only 12 months of his current deal to run.
Mikel Arteta is still waiting for Arsenal to make Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang a formal contract offer to secure his striker’s future.
Head coach Arteta last week declared he was “optimistic” that Aubameyang would extend his deal past the end of next season.
Aubameyang has developed a close relationship with Arteta and has been impressed with the direction in which the team have been heading under the Spaniard.
Arteta has been working hard to show Aubameyang that his ambitions can be matched by Arsenal and is understood to believe he has made some headway, which has caused his optimism.
But Aubameyang’s future is now in the hands of Arsenal’s head of football, Raul Sanllehi, who is yet to present a formal proposal to the 31-year-old.
Aubameyang currently earns around £200,000 a week plus a number of bonuses and add-ons, which is some way short of top earner Mesut Ozil, who is on £350,000 a week.
Arsenal will no doubt be reluctant to give Aubameyang parity with Ozil, and yet the club realise they must do something to recognise his standing as the club’s most important player.
Arteta is desperate to build his young side around Aubameyang and does not want to risk losing him in the next transfer window.
Should Arsenal fail to agree a new contract with Aubameyang they may be forced to cash in on him with only 12 months of his current deal remaining.
Arteta, meanwhile, believes the absence of supporters from Premier League matches has allowed some of his players to show more patience and control.
Asked if the empty stadium was helping his players, Arteta said: “I think for some of them, yes. When they play in front of 80,000 people, it is much harder, mostly when they are on the ball or the ball is coming close to them.
“Others need that extra motivation, extra pressure and extra passion to perform better. Every player is different.” Arteta is open to keeping on-loan midfielder Dani Ceballos, but admitted the Spaniard’s future was out of his hands. Ceballos has impressed in recent weeks alongside Granit Xhaka in midfield but is due to return to Real Madrid at the end of the season.
Arteta said: “We are talking to the club. Obviously we do not own the player, he is not in our hands so the clubs will need to have a communication.”
Arsenal are expected to once again leave Ozil and Matteo Guendouzi out of their squad to face Leicester City tonight. Guendouzi is yet to feature since grabbing the throat of Brighton striker Neal Maupay and also making it clear he would not be against leaving the club this summer. Ozil is being assessed following his “back soreness,” Arsenal said.
Valued performer: Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang