What is stopping Aubameyang from signing a new contract at Arsenal?

You either love the club you play for or you don’t? You either believe they have ambition to match your own, or you don’t? So why hasn’t Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang signed new contract yet?

It is a question that every Arsenal fan wants to know, but it is also interesting for any fan of football. Speculation has been raging since the beginning of the year as it became clear just how important Aubameyang is to Arsenal. Since his arrival in 2018 the Gunners have struggled by their standards, but Aubameyang has got them out of jail so many times his boots may might as well hold chance and community chest cards from Monopoly.

In short Aubameyang is a quality player, perhaps Arsenal’s one and truly only quality player. He scores goals, he creates goals, he is a delight to watch and is worth every penny of the reported £56 million that Arsenal gave Borussia Dortmund for him.

As it stands Aubameyang is entering his final season with the club, one which has not been able to qualify for the Champions League since his arrival. Surely this is the competition he wants to play in. He is 31 now and time is running out. Arsenal’s options are for him to sign an extended contract, or sell him within the next month, otherwise he will go for free at the end of this season coming up.

Usually statistics can be overused and to some extent make little sense in relevance of how the game is actually played out, but in a strikers case, all is transparent, after all they are on the pitch to do one thing, to score goals, that really is their job. And Aubameyang is surely one of the deadliest strikers in Europe. But there is irony that he is playing for a top club in Arsenal, but who are going through one of their worst situations of the past 30 years. Forget the recent FA Cup win, that was great and yet again it was Aubameyang’s goals that brought home the trophy, remember instead that the Gunners finished 8th this season. That was poor, and shouldn’t be brushed under the carpet.

So for much of the year the papers and media around the world have told us Aubameyang is going to sign a new contract, no doubt about it. The season because of the delayed response to the pandemic finally ended in mid July, we are now in September and no contract has been signed that we are aware of. In mid August the rumour mill went into overdrive when Aubameyang himself tweeted an hour glass suggesting that there would be a countdown and he would be signing a contract. Three weeks later we have nothing.

Maybe admin is simply getting in the way, maybe he is asking for too much, contract tweeks and the like, and it really is only a matter of days before he signs. But even if he does sign, which of course will be great news, why did it take him so long? During the season made sense in a way as he wanted to know if Arsenal would be in Europe next season, and what would their standing be? Could it be that he is waiting to see who Arsenal sign?

It looks likely that Aubameyang will sign, with just a few days until the new season kicks off that would feel like a low blow to the club if they had to sell him. At the same time the window doesn’t close until October 5th.

But even if he signs the fact that he has waited this long almost shows a lack of belief in his employers, and one has to wonder if that is a good thing or not going into the new season.

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Is Aubameyang bigger than Arsenal as the Gunners beat Chelsea in FA Cup final?

All of a sudden Arsenal seem back. After a poor season which saw Unai Emery sacked before Christmas and former player Mikel Arteta brought into the dug out it seemed like Arsenal would be waiting a long time for any type of silverware. However they have ended the season by winning the FA Cup against the odds.

Arsenal came from a goal down to beat Chelsea 2-1 to lift their 14th FA Cup which is a record. Indeed Arsenal have won 4 cups in the last decade and their name is becoming part of the cup itself- just go ahead and put red and white ribbons on permanently why don’t you?

A burning desire and their name to be scripted onto the cup seemed to come when they upset Manchester City at the semi-final stage. Arteta had changed up the system and even David Luiz was playing with confidence. This was the first glimpse that under Arteta Arsenal could end up being a force to be reckoned with.

In the final it was going to be incredibly difficult given that the last time Arsenal had faced Chelsea in a cup final was in the 2019 Europa League showpiece where Chelsea simply outplayed the Gunners as the game went on and ended up running out 4-1 winners. Sure Eden Hazard who is now at Real Madrid orchestrated the win but still that game surely had to be playing on some of the minds of the players?

Maybe then it was to no surprise that Chelsea took a 5th minute lead through Christian Pulisic who has been outstanding this season for the Blues. With 56 points earned this season the American international was the 3rd best player for Frank Lampard’s team.

Chelsea started brightly but couldn’t find a 2nd and there was just that feeling creeping in that they were not putting this game to bed. With under 30 minutes played Arsenal were awarded a stone wall penalty and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who else? stepped up to take and convert it and the game was back on.

Whilst the 2nd half had it’s lull periods Arsenal were looking more and more of a threat, how much difference from their second half performance in the Europa League. Chelsea hoped for extra time but the Gunners could sense blood and Aubameyang got his brace and the match winner with just 3 minutes left to play.

True Chelsea will feel that Mateo Kovacic’s sending off was harsh, though he was already on a yellow card. It’s unfortunate though that VAR perhaps isn’t used in the big decisions like this, because on this occasion the referee looked to have got it wrong. It’s also worth pointing out that Kovacic has racked up 8 yellow cards this season from just 14 starts in the league.

This cup win feels like a turning point for Arsenal though because finishing 8th in the league represents their worst season in a generation. Arteta has said the win was his most important of his career, now he will be hoping that his statement won’t hold true in a decades time.

The last word has to go to Aubameyang. He has scored 22 league goals this season and assisted in a further 3, meaning that he has contributed to almost 50% of Arsenal’s league goals. He has been phenomenal, the one truly world class player in the side that can change a defeat into a draw and a draw into a win.

Aubameyang stands above as the lead man in this Gunners side and the club will be hoping that he will sign a new contract and stay with the club. They most likely have little chance of that happening if Barcelona or Real Madrid come knocking but given how teams have had to step back somewhat following the pandemic maybe that call won’t happen and maybe Aubameyang will realise that at Arsenal he is the king of the hill, at another club that might not to be the case.

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Finishing 8th is terrible for Arsenal but there might be light at the end of the tunnel under Mikel Arteta

What a disappointing season it has been for Arsenal. Not many fans could have predicted that the Gunners would have fallen so far, finishing 8th in the Premier League for a club like Arsenal is just not acceptable.

It was an odd season for the club who saw 2 different managers in charge, this coming after having the same one in Arsene Wenger in the hot seat for two decades. Unai Emery was sacked at the end of November after a poor run especially away from home and Mikel Arteta was brought in.

Arteta’s arrival did raise eyebrows simply because this was his first managerial job but he had been working under Pep Guardiola at Manchester City for several seasons and that was deemed good enough for the job at the Emirates.

Arteta has a win rate of 55.5% with Arsenal since December, at the same time and with more games under his belt Unai Emery had a win rate of 55.1%. Also when Emery was sacked Arsenal were in 8th place in the league, in that respect Arteta has not improved the club. From the 20 Premier League games that Arteta was in charge for the Gunners earned 33 points. On average in a season Arsenal would currently finish on around 60 points under Arteta, again no huge improvement.

But these are all small steps and under Arteta the play of the team and the way he has changed up the system is showing positive signs. Arsenal lost 5 times under Arteta in the league, four of those were away from home and it is clear that the Gunners will need to improve on their away travels.

But what has been encouraging is some of the results the club have churned out. Beating Liverpool, only the 3rd club to do so this season was impressive even if the league title was over by then.

Despite a poor season by Arsenal’s standards their season isn’t over just yet, and this is why there could be light at the end of the tunnel under Arteta. The young manager has steered Arsenal into the FA Cup final where they will meet Chelsea in an all London derby. Even without fans present this is sure to be a cracking game.

Arsenal will want revenge after last seasons Europa League final where Chelsea crushed the Gunners. A trophy would justify for now Arteta’s appointment and really give the club a boost they need ahead of the new Premier League season which is due to start on September 12th.

On the face of it then Arsenal haven’t improved under Arteta, stats wise. However overall there has been quite significant improvement on the pitch. He has his own philosophy which is natural and it is taking time to implement that onto his team. We have seen flashes of it.

The future is looking a little brighter for Arsenal, you just have to look deeper to find it, but surely Arteta will find his way and next season will be a huge improvement for the Gunners.

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Mikel Arteta discusses Arsenal’s defeat to Brentford in recent friendly

If you had asked any sports bettor what they expected the outcome of the Arsenal versus Brentford friendly match to be, they would have suggested Arsenal as the victors. Yet, that wasn’t to be, as the Gunners experienced a 3-2 loss on their home turf. That was quite the stunning outcome, considering the team had just romped to a 6-0 victory against Charlton Athletic the previous Saturday. There was even a hat-trick in that game thanks to Eddie Nketiah.

However, the same sports bettors who claimed pay-outs on Saturday after the match would likely have had to see a loss form which is what was reported at the 22Bet sportsbook. There’s a 22Bet mobile app for iOS devices that can be used as well, with mobile betting having gained heavily in popularity in recent times. Despite the fact that this app was probably used for bettors to wager on the Arsenal versus Brentford game, it likely didn’t herald the results that most users were expecting.

The Gunners boss Mikel Arteta has spoken out and said that Arsenal’s players are focusing on finding their rhythm and fitness. While Arsenal may have taken the lead early on in the game against Brentford, they were not able to hold on to that lead, and Halil Dervisoglu added Brentford’s third goal. “We’re trying different things,” Arteta added during an interview with Sky Sports.

Arteta Looks to Different Training Methods and Gameplay

“We’re trying to give minutes in their legs to all of the players, obviously you have to change a lot of players through the games,” Arteta said. He made mention of the fact that it may take some time to fully become accustomed to playing in empty stadiums, due to there being no energy coming from fans.

However, the head coach spoke of it potentially being difficult for all Premier League clubs to get used to the lack of a crowd while playing their games once the season restarts. “I think that’s a big question mark”, he said. Time will obviously tell if the Gunners are able to overcome the lack of the fan attendance moving forward, but the result and performance against Manchester City were both disappointing.

“I think it will be very difficult to sustain big rhythms for 90 minutes for the first few games at least,” Arteta noted and that is something which was evident against City.

The Arsenal match against City took place on Wednesday, June 17th, and it took place at the Etihad Stadium. The first two matches which took place upon the return of the Premier League began with a one minute silence, in honor of all of those who have passed away in recent times due to the global pandemic.

Losing to Manchester City should not dishearten Arsenal who can still have a strong finish in the Premier League

For many it was the way Arsenal lost to Manchester City when the Premier League re started on Wednesday night that would have been the biggest concern.Losing 3-0, having David Luiz sent off (is he the gift that keeps on giving)? And then looking at a meaningful statistic that was certainly damning, Arsenal had 0 shots on target. Ouch!

Many expected City to win and Arsenal to lose, after all the Gunners have been poor on the road now for a few seasons, and they were playing the current champions. However there was an uncertainty given that the game of course was played behind closed doors. But it made no difference, City would have won 3-0 with or without fans and played some great football.

As a result Arsenal remain in 9th place and despite their 7th loss of the season the mid week didn’t turn out too bad for the club given that Sheffield United who are above them only earned a point. In short they didn’t lose pace for a European place.

Arsenal need to regroup and refocus, the display they put in against City and Luiz’s sending off will give their next opponents Brighton cause for celebration, and Graham Potter’s side may well be welcoming Arsenal and thinking that they are there for the taking. Brighton have had some very good results lately against the Gunners and have beaten them 2-1 at the Emirates earlier in the season.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta will be disappointed with the way his team lost at City but won’t forget that before the break for the Coronavirus Arsenal were one of the inform teams who had just recorded 3 wins in a row.

The Gunners are only 5 points from a Europa League place and whilst the Champions League looks a little off for them being 8 points adrift of Chelsea, if they can finish the season strong who knows what can happen?

Let’s look at Arsenal’s remaining fixtures. The Gunners have 2 away games in a row coming up facing Brighton and Southampton. Whilst those games look tricky a good Arsenal side can win those. After that they will be at home to Norwich who are bottom of the league and one would expect another 3 points from them. Then they are away to Wolves and at home to Leicester, these will be difficult games, but still Arsenal could win at least one of them.

After that they face Tottenham in the derby, a game that could go either way with no fans and atmosphere. Their last 3 games are against Liverpool, Aston Villa and Watford. The match against Liverpool could be easier than expected given that the Reds should have wrapped up the title by then. But matches against Villa and Watford where both teams could be battling relegation could be close affairs.

It’s possible though that Arsenal could finish the season with 59 points, that’s the prediction here and yes that would fall too short for a Champions League place. Possibly a Europa finish is on the cards, but even then Arsenal might fight and play better not to finish so low in the league.

It must be incredibly surreal for fans to see their club down in 9th place, and without all of their draws (there have been 13 so far) the club would actually be fighting in the relegation.

The game at the weekend against Brighton is a huge one then, lose that and Arsenal could already be losing their direction so soon after the restart. The club are better than that and Arteta must break their away day hoodoo.

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Premier League return: Manchester City need to make a statement whilst Arsenal have not given up on Europe

The Premier League will return on June 17th with two fixtures and both look like being mouth watering matches despite the fact that games are having to be played behind closed doors.

Aston Villa will take on Sheffield United in what will be the first Premier League game to take place in 99 days since the Coronavirus pandemic halted football. The evening game sees current champions Manchester City play Arsenal at the Etihad.

Aston Villa are in desperate need of all three points when their campaign restarts given that they are in 19th place, although a win would take them out of the relegation zone. Sheffield United are having a terrific season so far and could go into 5th place with a win. Both teams have a game in hand over the teams around them and that is why this is such an important game for them.

All eyes though will be in Manchester. How will Pep Guardiola’s team react after such a long break? If we look at the Bundesliga in Germany and for example compare City to current German champions Bayern Munich then they should be just fine. Bayern have been in incredible form not only winning games but scoring by the bucket load.

However with no fans it has also been proven in Germany that the home win rate has nosedived. From 46% to just 18%. Whilst City will be raring to go and have the better players they will also find it rather odd to be playing this way.

Arsenal are currently in 9th place and a visit to the Etihad would in normal circumstances have been a daunting trip. Now a team who have really felt the pressure from their own fans may just be able to throw off the shackles and possibly play better and more confident football behind closed doors.

The game will have added spice given that Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is returning back to City, of course he was Guardiola’s assistant for a few years before making the switch to Arsenal earlier in the season.

The omens do not look good for Arsenal who have lost five games in a row to City, who also find the back of the net rather too easily. Arsenal’s play usually suits City’s attacking although it will be fascinating to see if Arteta who knows City so well can out do Guardiola.

If Arsenal win then all eyes will be on Liverpool who could then wrap up the league title on Sunday. That would be unique in itself given that they are playing the derby against Everton.

As for Arsenal they have had a poor season by their standards so far and are in 9th place, though they were showing good form before the season had to be stopped. There has certainly been an improvement since Arteta replaced Unai Emery.

For City whilst they do have a game in hand over 3rd placed Leicester- this is the match and they are just 4 points in front of Brendan Rodgers team and would like to pull away from them. This season there is no catching Liverpool but at the end of the day if City were to finish 3rd for example it would really underline a forgettable season for the club.

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If Arsenal sell Aubameyang they could be in serious trouble

Recent reports have suggested that Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang could be sold in the summer, and this isn’t just fabricated given that the player is delaying signing a new contract.

Losing Aubameyang would be a huge blow to the Gunners. He has been the difference on so many occasions for the club. It has been an incredibly difficult season for Arsenal which has seen the club flirting with 10th position for long periods. However one has to wonder without his goals if Arsenal would be in the bottom half of the table?

In a difficult period for the club, which in truth has been for the last five years or so, Aubameyang is their one true stardust player, a striker that can make almost anything happen and does the most important of jobs, getting those goals. Of course he isn’t perfect and it is his huge missed chance that resulted in Arsenal being knocked out of the Europa League against Olympiacos a few weeks ago. But maybe the bigger picture shouldn’t just be highlighted on him and could be turned to the overall clubs performance in that 2nd leg.

In all competitions for Arsenal Aubameyang has scored 61 goals from 96 games which is a great return and he has scored 17 goals from 25 league games. Last season he was the joint top scorer in England with 22 goals. Arsenal have scored 40 goals in the league this season and Aubameyang has 17 and assisted in one other. That means he has been involved in 18 of their 40 goals which accounts for 45% of all of their league goals so far this season.

This is the reason that Arsenal losing the player will hurt them. Of course he is now 30 and it has been traditional for Arsenal in past seasons to give out only rolling contracts for players who are 30 or over. The problem with that is it is outdated. Players are fitter now and can last much longer. Aubameyang isn’t going to suddenly lose his quality and has at least four to five years still at the top.

However it may not boil down to Arsenal’s choice even if they do want to keep the player. At the end of the day he has kept delaying signing a contract and one can believe that the main reason is to see if the Gunners qualify for next seasons Champions League. The problem is that they are currently 3 wins from that and have too many teams between them and 4th.

The other problem is that Barcelona have come knocking. Currently they have had to panic buy through a shortage of strikers and bring in Martin Braithwaite. If they could get Aubameyang that would represent quite a capture. Though they don’t like Arsenal’s asking price of £50m, in this current climate and with the brilliant form that the player has been in that price looks like a steal.

Where ever Aubameyang ends up next season, sadly for Arsenal it doesn’t look like he will be playing with them and the club are going to have to have a very successful summer transfer window and bring in the right kind of players to feel this loss. Right now Aubameyang is keeping Arsenal afloat.

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Has the 4-0 victory over Newcastle green lit Arsenal’s season?

There are always turning points good and bad in football and one senses that Arsenal’s 4-0 win over Newcastle United at the weekend could just be the turning point that Arsenal have been looking for all season.

Arsenal don’t win games 4-0 anymore, in fact they don’t win many games at all. Currently they have 13 draws and this game against the Magpies looked like it would be number 14- and that was if they were lucky.

In truth it was a first half mostly dominated by the away team, who created very good chances and the likes of Allan Saint-Maximin and Joelinton looked very lively. Arsenal looked confused at home and woeful. The first half ended 0-0 and never felt not for one moment that Arsenal would score 4 goals in the second half. But they did.

A lot of that is down to manager Mikel Arteta’s half time talk, and it was interesting how he was able to identify the clubs positives and Newcastle’s weaknesses. Arsenal came out firing on all cylinders and it was the chasing down of the ball and the intensity that they showed right off the bat that won the game for them. Indeed they had started the match this way, and then were huffing and puffing with no ideas after five minutes. But the club in the second half looked a completely different side.

The Gunners are so very lucky to have Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as a striker- how many times has he got the club out of trouble when the chips have been down? And they have been down for so long. But Aubameyang keeps scoring and keeps hoping and he opened the scoring 9 minutes after the re start. When Nicolas Pepe scored the 2nd goal, three minutes later the game was over, Newcastle’s hearts had left the stadium.

It’s true that goals number 3 and 4 put a shine over a game that felt like a 2-0 victory but at the end of the day goals and wins bring confidence to a team. That was only Arteta’s 2nd win in 8 games, although he has only lost one so far.

The question now being posed is is this the beginning of a strong run for Arsenal now, who could still claim a good position. After Manchester City were banned by UEFA in participating in the Champions League, 5th place would now be up for grabs, pending their appeal. If so Arsenal are only six points from that target. With clubs ranked 4th-9th not being consistent enough, Arsenal really could make a charge and a statement and what a comeback it would for the club who have remained around 10th place for much of the season.

What is interesting is taking a look at the clubs upcoming fixtures. Their next game will be tough but they will be at home to Everton. They then have another home match against West Ham. There are trips to both Brighton and Southampton followed by a home match against Norwich and a trip to Wolves before returning home to face Leicester. All of those games look like Arsenal could get points in. Their biggest problem is projecting their home form over to their away form, where they have really struggled not just this season but for the past 3 at least.

Take out the Leicester game though and Arsenal won’t face a top 6 side until the end of April when they play Tottenham away. In May they will play Liverpool, but again all of their opponents now will not be classed as the biggest teams in the league. Still Arsenal have struggled against them anyway this season.

But surely scoring 4 goals in one game has given the club a lift and taken away that dark cloud that has hung over the Emirates since August. Is this the moment that Arteta makes a name for himself and the talented Arsenal players step up to the plate, or was it just a convenient speed bump on the road to a mediocre season?

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Have draws saved Arsenal from relegation?

Draws can only take you so far in football and if you were to draw every single game of the season you’d probably finish 18th and still go down. But they seemed to have saved Arsenal in this one.

Arsenal have drawn a huge number of games this season, it has been 13 so far. Only Wolves come close with 11. If we take 13 points away from the club they would be left with 18 points and would be 19th based on goal difference and a huge 7 points from safety with 13 games remaining. This is a shocking statement to make about Arsenal who are surely one of the great clubs of English football and certainly one of the most successful. But this season has been a gigantic step backwards for the club, who, in truth, have been going backwards for some time.

Of course the other argument of the Gunners drawing games is that those could have been wins and if they were the club would now be on 57 point and be 2nd in the table. But let’s not fool ourselves and this is meant with all due respect to a great club but Arsenal have mostly looked like losing the games they drew this season and there has been countless times when the club have been leading a game only to be over run in the second half and outplayed and then getting pegged back. In no way shape or form are Arsenal better than the 31 points they have so far this season.

The club have won just 6 games this season, an amount they had reached by the end of September when they went the season unbeaten in 2003/04 and those six games represent a return of  a 24% win rate. Even if we leave out Liverpool who are having an amazing season and look at Manchester City in 2nd, City have a win rate by comparison of 64%. Chelsea in 4th have managed 48%, and even West Ham in 18th have the same win rate as the Gunners.

Arsenal are also on target though presumably not on purpose to achieve the most draws in a Premier League season. Currently it is held by 3 clubs: Newcastle, Aston Villa and Sunderland who have 17 draws in a 38 game season. Arsenal just need 4 more to equal that record.

Points wise if Arsenal continue like they have they will be very lucky to reach 50 points which would be one of their worst seasons in a generation. Can Mikel Arteta turn the clubs fortunes around? On the evidence we have seen in the 6 weeks he has been at the club he could but it looks to be a very long road ahead for Arsenal.

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Arsenal record their 13th draw of the season and leave fans very frustrated

Arsenal drew 0-0 away to Burnley to move up from 12th to 10th in the league. It was the clubs 13th draw this season. The Premier League record from 38 games is 17 and the Gunners are well on course to equal or even beat this.

It was another disappointing result for Arsenal who have struggled to win games. Just 2 now from their last 17. Of course it depends on how you view results but new manager Mikel Arteta has oversaw just 1 league win from 7 games. Of course he has only lost one also, which came against Chelsea in a game which could have easily have finished as another draw.

Whilst draws have been the difference between fighting relegation, draws do not challenge for European positions either and this has clearly been Arsenal’s worst season in 35 years. Had those draws been losses Arsenal would currently be in 19th place with 19 points. And, had they been converted to wins they would be in 4th place with 43 points. Truth is though this Arsenal side have been average to poor as we have seen them take the lead in games only to be pegged back.

Against Burnley they couldn’t manage a goal which was unfortunate for the club as they welcomed back prolific striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. The player had missed the last 3 games through suspension after he was sent off earlier in the month.

Whilst Arsenal did show promise against Burnley they only managed 2 shots on target, as did the home side. But this is clearly not the Arsenal of old and one wonders what Arteta will do with much of this squad in the summer? Is it time to sell the bulk of the team? Would that simply be panicking? Or is it true that most of the starting eleven, whilst good players simply can’t cut it at Arsenal who should be a team aiming for at least the top 6. The Gunners have been going back for a few years now and this season looks like the end result.

They will enjoy a two week break now and the luck of the draw means that their next 3 Premier League matches will be at home. They will be against Newcastle, Everton and West Ham. Also the club won’t play a so called big name club again until the end of April when they take on Tottenham in the London derby.

Fans have been left very frustrated and even angry at the clubs results. Arteta needs time and respect but his tenure has hardly started well. Too many draws feel like they are glossing over the bigger picture. The only thing to give the fans hope will be a good end to the season and trying to finish in a respectable place, namely the top 6 has to be Arteta’s objective, they are currently 5 points from that target.

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