Former Premier League footballer Stan Collymore has suggested that failure to qualify for the Champions League could see Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang leave Arsenal in pursuit of greater successes.
Aubameyang won the Premier League’s Golden Boot in his first full season for the Gunners, though was unable to send them through to the Champions League group stages after falling short in the league and in Europe.
Collymore has issued a warning to Arsenal fans in his column for the Daily Mirror, claiming that the Gunners will struggle without the Gabon striker, who is poised to reach his half-ton for the club prior to their Premier League clash against Sheffield United.
Emphasising the importance that Arsenal finish in the top four, he said: “Arsenal need to be careful with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – trouble could be brewing.
“The Gabon forward has scored 49 goals in 75 games for the Gunners, a strike-rate that is among the best in the business. That doesn’t take into account his assists, either.
“However, just like Teemu Pukki at Norwich City, there is a feeling that if Aubameyang doesn’t find the net, then Arsenal struggle to find goals.
“That’s why it’s imperative the club remains in the top four.
“This way they can persuade their main striker that he can at least challenge for the game’s top prizes.
“It’s touch-and-go whether they qualify for the Champions League next season, too.
“So, failure could mean that Aubameyang decides to move on.”
There is surely no need for Collymore to warn Arsenal fans that on-pitch failures could see their best players leave, having gone through similar scenarios with the likes of Cesc Fabregas and Robin van Persie while the club were unable to win silverware.
What’s more, with the striker entering his thirties in June, Arsenal may soon be planning for life without Aubameyang regardless – not that his form makes it an immediate concern at present.
Though given his blistering start to the campaign with seven goals in eight league games, Collymore may be right in suggesting Arsenal’s hopes rest firmly on his shoulders – but then again, isn’t it the striker’s job to score goals?
Will Arsenal qualify for the Champions League?
Arsenal fans, is Collymore merely pointing out the obvious, or will Aubameyang remain committed to the Gunners? Join the discussion by commenting below!Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!