Aubameyang, Lacazette and Pepe could exit Arsenal together as January transfer ruled out

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The pressure is on at Arsenal.

And there are two people who are bearing the brunt of that pressure right now.

Manager Mikel Arteta is understandably at the forefront after a tepid performance in the defeat to Everton on Monday night, making it five defeats in eight Premier League away games this season.

That followed a disappointing loss to Manchester United at Old Trafford and left the Gunners seventh in the Premier League table having looked like moderately shock candidates to challenge for the top four this season.

The other under scrutiny is captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who has not scored since October and missed gilt-edged chances in the defeats to United and Everton.

Aubameyang is out of contract at the Emirates Stadium in 2023 and could be sold to secure transfer funds before then.

But is the time right in January to let him go? We asked football.london‘s Arsenal writers to have their say.

Chris Wheatley – Chief Arsenal correspondent

Mikel Arteta has previously said that he wants to show “trust” in his players if they make mistakes, but it’s quite clear that Arsenal captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is eroding that trust with his performances of late.

Aubameyang has started most of his games this season as the central striker, compared to last campaign where he found himself isolated on the left wing.

The Gabon forward has missed two relatively simple opportunities in Arsenal’s past two league games, which would have almost certainly salvaged a point from each of those matches.

He is a confidence player and right now that appears to be eroded. A summer transfer certainly can’t be ruled out and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the likes of Alexandre Lacazette, Nicolas Pepe and Aubameyang leaving together when July comes around.

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Tashan Deniran-Alleyne – Arsenal writer

I can understand the argument for selling Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in 2022 and why he shouldn’t be starting games.

Currently he’s a long way off the form that saw him single-handedly win Arsenal the FA Cup in 2020 and dig the team out of many tricky situations.

It’s very easy to point to the contract situation and make comparisons to Mesut Ozil, but I question if Mikel Arteta is doing everything he can to get the best out of his captain.

Thierry Henry alluded to something not being quite right with Aubameyang at the moment and I tend to agree as I think he’s playing like someone who knows he will only get one chance per game.

That’s not a defence of his recent misses, but for a striker who has made a career out of thriving on chances, one per game can’t be good for his confidence.

Selling him in January would be a bad idea as despite being bang out of form, he remains Arsenal’s most reliable goalscorer and there’s no evidence things would improve if he left especially as whatever Arteta’s system is, it doesn’t get the best out of the centre-forward.

With that said, next summer feels like the perfect time for both parties to part ways, unless there’s a major change somewhere else…

Chris Davison – Arsenal fan brands editor

Aubameyang is underperforming, there’s no doubt about that. And At 32 years of age, I struggle to see him reaching the heights he has experienced throughout his career again, at Dortmund and early on at Arsenal in particular.

For a player who has more often than not been so clinical and dangerous in front of goal, it’s hard not to sit here and worry about him experiencing a decline in terms of consistency.

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Do I still think he can contribute? Absolutely. But on a regular basis? No. I would sell but only if an offer that simply couldn’t be rejected was put on the table.

I think Lacazette should get another start at the weekend, but last night just proves that benching Aubameyang won’t solve all of the issues for Arteta. The club must look to bring in a top-quality striker who will instantly raise the standards going forward and provide a major threat every single week.

Bailey Keogh – Arsenal fan brands writer

If Arsenal had another striker who was capable of leading the line and being successful in doing so, then there is no question that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang should be left out of the squad.

However, this isn’t the case and the defeat to Everton is proof that the club captain should not be left out of the side, as his presence was missed.

He has been guilty of missing chances recently, but the chances are being created when he is on the field, which is not the case when Alexandre Lacazette is leading the line.

Until another striker is bought in, Aubameyang should be in the starting line up.

Aubameyang should only be sold if Edu has two strikers he can sign in the upcoming transfer windows, with one of these strikers possessing world-class ability.

Eddie Nketiah and Lacazette seem like certainties for a departure, meaning if we were to sell Aubameyang, then Folarin Balogun would be the only striker at the club.

Another top-class striker to compete with the club captain could be exactly what the 32-year-old needs to find his best firm again.

Source by Football London

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