Quickly after Arsenal had gained a record-extending 14th FA Cup title using on a brace from Gabonese ahead Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to beat Chelsea 2-1 in Saturday’s ultimate at Wembley, Gunners boss Mikel Arteta was requested about the way forward for his star striker.
Arteta was effusive in his reward for Aubameyang, undecided on extending his contract with a membership that ended eighth within the league, their lowest since 1994-95. “Huge video games require large moments for large gamers. He has delivered that within the semi-final and he has accomplished it once more within the ultimate,” Arteta stated, referring to Aubameyang’s double that helped upset Manchester Metropolis within the semi-finals.
“He is aware of what I take into consideration him. I wish to construct the squad round him. I believe he needs to remain and it’s nearly getting the deal accomplished. These moments will assist him to understand that we’re on the proper path and he’s an enormous a part of that. He’s liked by all people on the membership. Hopefully he can proceed with us.”
Arteta’s feedback underline how essential Aubameyang is to the workforce whose rebuilding has been entrusted to its 38-year-old former captain, who ended his apprenticeship underneath Pep Guardiola at Metropolis to take over Arsenal in December.
Aubameyang, 31, has confirmed his goal-scoring qualities in abundance since arriving in Arsenal two years in the past. Sunday’s heroics towards Frank Lampard’s Chelsea solely confirmed why followers, Arteta and workforce mates need the striker to in some way be persuaded to remain in Arsenal.
Having gained, and scored, a first-half penalty that nullified Christian Pulisic’s early opener for Chelsea, Aubameyang confirmed no nerves to attain previous Blues’ goalkeeper Willy Caballero with a fragile chip off his less-favoured left foot halfway by the second half. The objective encapsulated one other excellent season for the previous Borussia Dortmund participant, who completed 2019/20 with 29 targets throughout all competitions.
For the sixth straight season, Aubameyang has scored 25 or extra targets in all competitions. His whole of 70 targets for Arsenal since arriving in January, 2018 is the best by any participant plying his commerce in England; Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah is a detailed second with 68.
Requested about his Arsenal future in a pitch-side interview after the sport, the membership captain was coy. “I’m actually not interested by this. I simply wish to get pleasure from with the blokes and take the trophy now,” he stated. At 31, and into the ultimate yr of his contract, there isn’t a doubt a transfer away from the Emirates Stadium may go well with the participant. The temptation of shifting to a membership higher geared up to instantly problem for main trophies have to be robust for Aubameyang at this level of his profession.
Arteta although has initiated Arsenal’s transition and the early indicators have been largely constructive. The FA Cup triumph will give the brand new supervisor much-needed leverage with membership bosses going into the switch market. Arsenal, in all probability, although will stay a piece in progress subsequent season.
It’s right here that Arteta faces one of many earliest challenges to his managerial profession – convincing a high participant like Aubameyang to increase his keep regardless of Arsenal’s transitional section and the absence of Champions League soccer subsequent season.
In favour of the Spanish tactician although is a good platform Arsenal have, to construct on subsequent season. Regardless of their eighth-place league end, Arsenal is not going to need to undergo the ignominy of no European soccer for the primary time in 25 years.
Whereas the Europa League isn’t the place Arsenal wish to be, the extra income it is going to deliver will nonetheless be essential, particularly as a result of Covid-19 pandemic. In these circumstances, convincing a participant of Aubameyang’s high quality on the Arteta mission might be an vital victory in itself, for the membership and supervisor.
How the striker’s contract scenario pans out this summer time will even give an early indication of the place the membership stands forward of Arteta’s first full season as supervisor.
The Gunners’ victory over Chelsea introduced them their fourth FA Cup title in seven seasons. It’s undoubtedly the return to Champions League, a contest they haven’t performed in for the final three seasons, and difficult for the Premier League title, which they final gained in 2004, which can function on the high of Arsenal’s short- and mid-term priorities. Making certain Aubameyang doesn’t transfer elsewhere and spends his 30s on the membership might be a superb begin to the Arteta period.