Outside all of the current Xhaka distraction – the captain responded to fans jeering at him in a similar manner – Arsenal might have a problem on their hands that they are not paying attention to. By the looks of it, there is tension in the Arsenal camp and it has started affecting the club’s performance on the pitch. First, it was a loss against Sheffield United, and this weekend, the team bottled a comfortable 2-0 lead against Crystal Palace, ending the match in 2-2 at home.
In all of these, there is one looming problem that many people are not addressing and we can be sure to see it turn into an issue in the coming future – it is nothing more than Aubameyang’s future in Arsenal. Like other players on his level, Aubameyang will crave achievements, and Arsenal does not seem to be in the right frame to hand that to him so we might be seeing the Gabonese forward make a move away from the club when his contract ends.
Arsenal fans are also not helping issues with their hostility towards the players recently. With the incident that happened on Saturday to club captain Xhaka, we would have thought the outrage on social media to how disgusting the fans’ jeering at the Swiss international was would be enough to make people act right, but a report on Sun UK showed a clip of some fans hurling abuses at Aubameyang.
Needless to say, Aubameyang has been at his best for Arsenal so far and the kind of treatment those fans dish out to him is uncalled for. Without the 30-year-old’s goals, Arsenal would be hanging on to dear life 19th in the Premier League table, and it is surprising to see some fans behave irrationally towards him.
Why seeing Aubameyang leave will be a worry
Arsenal has been away from Europe’s top competition (Champions League) for quite a while and one can tell the negative effect of that on the club. It has affected the finances, pulling power, and their overall image in world football. This should explain why the club is desperate to do everything in their power to get back into the league.
Their options, however, are limited. The easiest one is to finish top four in the Premier League, but this also seems to be gradually slipping away from them. Currently, they stand fifth on the table after losing precious points to clubs one would have thought was an easy win for them.
Now the problem with seeing Aubameyang, the club’s top scorer, leave is that it would leave a hole in the club. If they can struggle this way with Aubameyang in their squad, how do they plan to catch up when he leaves?
That then poses a great problem for the club, the management, and even the fans. A problem they have somehow acted like they were unaware of.
But we have Lacazette, why should we worry?
Anyone who has been following the club’s progress this season will have seen and understood that Lacazette hasn’t been at his best so far. It is safe to say he hasn’t been a big revelation since joining the club. With 29 goals in 72 appearances, he’s doing fine but that’s not all Arsenal needs him for. They don’t need ‘doing fine’, they need an excellent player who can really deliver.
He is still a valuable member of the team regardless, but should Aubameyang decide to leave, the Arsenal striking force will be left to him and that’s not a very great alternative as compared with Aubameyang who scored 39 goals in just 59 appearances.
It’s an entirely fair thing for Aubameyang to want out should Arsenal end up not qualifying for the Champions League next season. As it is, the two options available to Arsenal is to either brace up for Aubameyang’s departure, or hustle up to finish in the top four of the Premier League.
Ironically, the fate of Arsenal finishing in the top four largely rests on Aubameyang’s shoulders so the fans might need to start learning how to be a little bit civil towards their players.