Alexandre Lacazette has told Arsenal that they must ensure that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang signs a new deal with the club.
The 31-year-old’s contract will expire next summer, having proven his worth to the Emirates Stadium side by scoring 71 goals in 110 outings in all competitions since arriving from Borussia Dortmund in 2017.
Additionally, he is coming off the back of a campaign in which he scored 29 times in 44 outings, finishing as the Premier League’s second leading marksman behind only Leicester hitman Jamie Vardy, and Lacazette says his forward cohort is too important to let go easily.
“We need him,” Lacazette told L’Equipe of his colleague, who has been used effectively off the left wing. “He has the statistics of a centre-forward.”
“I think they can be pretty relaxed,” said Arsenal’s manager. “I can say that I am even more confident than I was at the end of last season.”
Meanwhile, the France international striker is not concerned that Aubameyang is the first-choice penalty taker at the Emirates Stadium.
“It’s true that I don’t take them anymore, but that’s not a problem,” he said. “I know if I wanted to get one, he would let me have it.
“If it was getting into my head or if I was into something selfish, I would try to take them or ask him to have one shot out of two, but that’s really not how I see things. He scores them and he saves us, that’s what matters.
“Sometimes I’m criticised for not being selfish enough, but that’s not my vision of football. I like to score, but I have a role other than as a goalscorer. Now I take part in the game more and I get a different pleasure from doing that.
“In Lyon, I had the responsibility of scoring, but here, it’s a little more that I have to help the team play well and to be dangerous.”