Gabriel Agbonlahor believes Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang would be performing better if he was in talks over a new contract with Arsenal.
The Gunners captain put pen to paper on a new contract with the north London club in September 2020, with his deal now running until the end of June 2023.
Aubameyang has a fantastic goal scoring record for Arsenal since joining from Borussia Dortmund in January 2018, but has started this season off quite slowly.
The 32-year-old forward has found the back of the net just twice this season in the Premier League despite featuring six times for the Gunners in the top-flight.
Aubameyang was rather disappointing in Arsenal’s 0-0 draw with Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday afternoon, coming off in the 72nd minute by Mikel Arteta as the Gunners boss searched for a goal.
The Gabon striker failed to make an impact down at the Amex Stadium and has now received some criticism from Agbonlahor, who thinks he would not be playing as badly if he was after a new and improved contract at the Emirates Stadium.
“You can’t just keep someone on the pitch if they aren’t performing,” Agbonlahor said on talkSPORT. “It’s different with Ronaldo because he is one of the greatest ever players.
“But Aubameyang was poor. He wasn’t holding the ball up. It didn’t look like he had that pace to get in behind that Brighton defence and it was the right call to bring him off.
“When you are looking for a new contract, there is no lie, your performances are going to go up.
“Once the contract is signed, naturally you are going to take it down a gear, at least, that’s what you can see in Aubameyang’s performances since he has signed that contract.
“Where’s the hunger (on Saturday) say if he was still negotiating his contract for £300k-a-week? Let’s be honest, if he was still negotiating a contract, he would have got a better performance 1000% against Brighton.”
Speaking after Aubameyang scored the second goal in Arsenal’s North London Derby victory against Tottenham last weekend, Gary Neville spoke about the impact of the Gunners captain.
He said on The Gary Neville Podcast: “I thought Arsenal had lost Aubameyang a few months ago. He looked like he didn’t want to be there anymore, but today he set the tone as the striker with the speed of his pressing aided by the young ones in behind.”
Aubameyang will be determined to return to scoring form after the international break when Arsenal welcome Crystal Palace to north London on Monday, October 18.
Source by Football London