Monday Apr 05, 2021. 14:00
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta says Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s inconsistent form in front of goal is not linked to the new contract he signed in September.
Aubameyang, 31, has scored just 14 times in 32 appearances across all competitions for the Gunners this season, with three of those goals coming in a 4-2 win over Leeds United in February.
The Gabon international penned a new three-year deal at Emirates Stadium after leading the club to FA Cup glory last year, but looks set to fall well short of the 29 and 31-goal haul he achieved in the two seasons prior to the current campaign.
“It is easy to connect things like that, but I am not suspicious of that,” Arteta said when asked if there was a link between Aubameyang’s drop in form and his new deal.
“We have had conversations about what he wanted to do from last year’s point of view to his near future in the next two years, and he was ambitious with that.
“To maintain that level is complicated but he is trying his best.”
Arteta believes there are a list of reasons why Aubameyang has yet to reach the level of previous seasons but is confident that the Arsenal skipper can rekindle that form, as the North London club aim to end a dismal campaign on a high.
“We talked about the ratio of goals we need him to score to give us the best chance of being at the top,” he added. “It has not been what it has been in recent years and it’s contributed to by a lot of things. It is not just his thing.
“We need Auba in different form in the next games to give us our best chance to finish where we want to finish.”