Sunday, September 27, 2020

Arsenal fans can be pretty relaxed – Arteta still confident on Aubameyang renewal

SoccerNews in English Premier League 11 Sep 2020


Arsenal fans can be “pretty relaxed” about the future of captain and star striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, says manager Mikel Arteta.

Gunners boss Arteta has made no secret of his confidence that Aubameyang, whose deal expires in June, will extend his stay at the Emirates Stadium.

Speculation has grown that the Gabon forward has agreed a new three-year deal at Arsenal, where he has scored 71 goals in 110 appearances since joining from Borussia Dortmund in January 2018.

With an official announcement still yet to be made, Arteta was asked if fans should be wary of celebrating too soon at a news conference previewing their Premier League season opener against Fulham.

“I can say that I am even more confident than I was at the end of last season when you asked me the same question 10 times!” Arteta said with a smile. 

“I am really optimistic, yes. I think they [the fans] can be pretty relaxed.”

While the future of Aubameyang appears to be with Arsenal, goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez has been linked with a big-money switch to Aston Villa.

The Argentine impressed when deputising for the injured Bernd Leno towards the back end of last season, helping Arteta win the FA Cup in his first season as boss.

But with Leno now back fit and no guarantees over his playing time, Martinez has been tipped to seek pastures new.

“I cannot stop speculation that we have about all our players coming in and out,” Arteta added. “I don’t want to comment on individuals without having the right answer to give.

“We have some really good players in many different positions, some of them are duplicated. Some clubs come to us and their interest is to get our players. 

“It’s very difficult to promise players game time or be the first choice, it’s part of this period in the market, we try to manage the situation the best we can.”

Mesut Ozil’s situation at the club remains unclear having fallen out of favour under Arteta last term.

But during pre-season, Ozil has been sending messages suggesting he will remain at Arsenal and Arteta remained non-committal as to how he features in his plans going forward.

“Well there’s not been any updates. All the players that we have available here have a contract with Arsenal football club,” he said. 

“They are all treated the same way, all putting in maximum effort in every training session and this is what I expect from all of them.”

It was confirmed this week that Arteta’s job had changed from head coach to first team manager.

Asked for his thoughts on the switch in title, he replied: “I’m excited with this change, but I’m just here to try to do my job as good as possible.

“Obviously it’s always nice to be recognised by the club, but I just want to help the club to do the right things, when I have to be involved great. 

“I just want to help this club be the most successful in this country as soon as possible in a sustainable way. That’s my ambition we have to do it together.”


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