Arsenal to agree £30m Alexandre Lacazette exit after new Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang deal

Arsenal will reportedly sell Alexandre Lacazette once Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang signs a new contract.

Arsenal to agree £30m Alexandre Lacazette exit after new Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang deal

Arsenal to agree £30m Alexandre Lacazette exit after new Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang deal (Image: GETTY)

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s new Arsenal contract will pave the way for Alexandre Lacazette to leave the club despite manager Mikel Arteta saying he wanted to keep the striker last month, according to stunning new reports. Arsenal have made tying Aubameyang down to a new deal a priority after a 29-goal campaign, which he crowned with a brace in the FA Cup final win over Chelsea a week ago.

The Gabon international is expected to pen a three-year deal after the Gunners agreed to meet his demands for a £250,000-a-week salary.

That will make him Arsenal’s second-highest paid player and he will become the best paid in a year’s time with Mesut Ozil expected to leave the Emirates at the end of his deal in 2021.

But keeping Aubameyang is set to see Lacazette seal a switch to Atletico Madrid, it has been claimed.

The 29-year-old has long been linked to the La Liga giants and almost joined them in June 2017 before moving to Arsenal the following month after Atletico were handed a transfer ban.

A verbal agreement had even been reached between the striker and the Madrid outfit and Diego Simeone’s opinion of the France front-man remains high.

Arsenal to agree £30m Alexandre Lacazette exit after new Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang deal

Arsenal to agree £30m Alexandre Lacazette exit after new Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang deal (Image: GETTY)

That’s according to the Daily Star Sunday, who say Lacazette is on course for a £30million move to Los Rojiblancos this summer.

Lacazette was the Arsenal’s Player of the Year in 2018-19 after contributing 19 goals and 13 assists in 49 appearances across all competitions.

But his 2019-20 campaign has been rockier and he has had to endure spells out of the team, particularly under Mikel Arteta, who has utilised Eddie Nketiah instead of Lacazette.

He only returned to the starting eleven after Nketiah’s suspension for a red card, although he ended the season strongly and started in the FA Cup triumph against Chelsea at Wembley.

Yet despite that and the fact Arteta has publicly declared he wants to keep striker, who cost Arsenal a then-club record £54m three years ago, the Daily Star Sunday say Lacazette is not content with being a bit-part player.

He wants to be the guaranteed starting striker but Arteta is likely to use several different options to lead the line next term, with Aubameyang, Nketiah and Gabriel Martinelli among his options.

Martinelli will not return from a knee injury until the end of 2020 at the earliest but the 19-year-old Brazilian is a huge prospect for Arsenal.

Plucked from his homeland a year ago thanks partly to the soon-to-be-sacked head of recruitment Francis Cagigao, Martinelli produced 10 goals and four assists in 26 games in his first year in Europe.

And having split his time across left wing and centre forward, Martinelli is likely to get more minutes centrally thanks to Bukayo Saka’s form down the left – with Aubameyang the first-choice forward on that flank.

Martinelli and Nketiah can also both play on the right flank but Nicolas Pepe and incoming signing Willian, who will sign a three-year deal to swap Chelsea for Arsenal, will be the main options on the right.

That means Lacazette’s chances of regular minutes of playing as the lone striker, the only position he has played for Arsenal, in a 4-3-3 formation will be further harmed.

The Daily Star Sunday say that Willian’s imminent arrival and a new deal for Aubameyang are hurrying Lacazette’s exit.

While Lacazette has managed 48 goals and 25 assists in 127 appearances across all competitions for Arsenal, Aubameyang has mustered up 70 goals and 15 assists in 109 games and it is no surprise the Londoners are seemingly preferring to keep the African.

If Lacazette does leave, questions will certainly be asked of Arsenal boss Arteta, who made it clear he wanted to keep the France international just last month.

Arsenal to agree £30m Alexandre Lacazette exit after new Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang deal

Arsenal to agree £30m Alexandre Lacazette exit after new Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang deal (Image: GETTY)

“Why would I want to lose a player like him? I’m really happy with him,” Arteta said.

“I really like Alex, I said that even before I joined here that he is the type of striker that I really like.

“I think he had periods where he was very unlucky because he was having the chances and not converting them which he is not used to.

“But the way he can link play, he’s a massive competitor he hates to lose. He goes for every ball, you see in every challenge how he’s ready to go.

“He works really hard and he’s a very intelligent player, I am really happy with him.”

Speaking about his future last week, Lacazette admitted Arsenal had not opened talks with him about a new deal – with his current agreement expiring in 2022 – despite their ongoing discussions with team-mate Aubameyang over an extension.

He said: “No, we didn’t talk about this. Me, I’m just playing my games and finishing the season to see how it’s going to be but we didn’t talk about anything.”

Asked if the future of his friend Aubameyang would determine his own future, the Frenchman continued: “No, because we know that Auba has a lot of discussions with the club and I can’t put my future on someone else.

“When he came everyone knows we had a good relationship together. We always talk about everything, not only about football but everything in life. He’s a good guy. That’s why between us it became really easy.”

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