'Aubameyang needs to show more' - Arsenal captain's motivation questioned by Lehmann

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Arsenal 2020-21
The Gabon striker has struggled for form this season after signing a new contract at the Emirates Stadium

Former Arsenal goalkeeper Jens Lehmann has questioned whether Gunners captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has lost his drive after signing a lucrative new contract with the club.

Aubameyang was in sparkling form as he led Arsenal to FA Cup final glory last season and emerged as the key man in Mikel Arteta's starting line-up.

That inspired the club to hand him a new contract in September, but his form has slumped this season and Lehmann has questioned whether his levels of motivation have dipped since he sealed his new deal.

“From my experience in football, you sometimes see players who are fantastic when it comes up to the end of their contract and then they rest a little when they get the new deal,” Lehmann told Goal at a BT Sport event.

“It has happened many times and it is all about having the right mentality. Aubameyang is a good player, but he needs to show more."

Lehmann, who was part of Arsenal's fabled 'Invincibles' side from the 2003-04 season, also feels that current manager Arteta will not be allowed to continue in his post unless he can inspire a rapid turnaround in results.

Arsenal have made their worst start to a season in 46 years after losing seven of their first 12 Premier League matches, with Lehmann questioning the philosophy Arteta attempting to impose.

Mikel Arteta Arsenal 2020-21

"Arsenal are producing results that are quite average, I can say," he stated. "This is a big brand in football and Arsenal are disappointing at the moment. Maybe we have to give them a little more time to change direction.

"When you look at the table and see Arsenal in 15th position? This is the worst I have seen from the team for as long as I can remember and you can see why people are not happy. 

"Arteta has to produce, it is simple. If you go to a big club and you don't produce, it doesn't matter. It is here and now and if you don't produce, we all know what can happen."

Lehmann went on to suggest Arsenal have not moved forward since Arsene Wenger stepped down as manager in the summer of 2018, as he suggested the clamour to replace the Frenchman now looks to have been misguided. 

"Fans like to see a side that is moving forward and they were keen to have a change in the final years of Arsene Wenger, but they can see that he was more successful than those who have followed him. So they probably wish they could have him back," he continued. 

"The style of football was always good with Wenger. The results were not as great as they were when I was there, but the way they played was always entertaining. 

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"When I see Arsenal at this moment, I don't know what the plan is. The players don't seem to be working as a unit and the approach of the team is not clear. As we have seen from their results, something is not right.

"They won the FA Cup a few months ago and this was a great achievement, but what we are seeing from Arsenal is not good enough."

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