Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang said the Premier League’s Golden Boot is already on his mind after scoring Arsenal’s goal in their 1-0 opening-day victory over Newcastle United.
The 30-year-old striker shared last season’s top-scorer award with Liverpool’s Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah, the latter opening his account for the new campaign in the Reds’ 4-1 win over Norwich City on Friday.
At St James’ Park on Sunday, Aubameyang was the beneficiary of a mix-up in the Newcastle defence.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles pounced on Fabian Schar’s pass before Jetro Willems could react, then crossed to the Gabon international who flicked the ball past Martin Dubravka and into the net.
In a game of few clear-cut chances, Aubameyang’s clinical finishing made the difference and he admitted he went into the game with high hopes for the season.
Asked whether the Golden Boot is a target this season, Aubameyang said: “Of course it is in the mind of a striker but first of all the team is the most important.
“I’m really pleased the goal helped us win the game.”
25.6% – Since his Premier League debut in February 2018, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has the best shot conversion rate (25.6%) of the 68 players to have scored 6+ goals in the competition. Hitman. #NEWARS pic.twitter.com/psuoDaw5IO
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) August 11, 2019
Arsenal boss Unai Emery started the game with Alexandre Lacazette on the bench along with new signing Nicolas Pepe, who came on as a second-half substitute once the Gunners were ahead.
Newcastle improved with the introduction of Allan Saint-Maximin off the bench but, like Arsenal, mustered just two shots on target all afternoon.
Aubameyang said he felt Arsenal deserved all three points after they banished the memory of a 2-0 defeat to Manchester City on the opening day of 2018-19.
He said: “We fought today a lot. It was a great game against a good team.
“It was important to start with a win, last season we started bad, so we are happy.
“It is always positive for all the squad to win the first game, everyone is happy to get three points and we’re looking forward to winning more games.”
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