Arsenal have had a rather peculiar season under Unai Emery’s guidance in his first year in charge, don’t you think? The Gunners went on a 21 game unbeaten run towards the end of 2018, however, they have also had a number of poor performances despite still competing for a place in the final four of the Europa League and for a place in the top-four of the Premier League.
The current campaign was always going to be a transitional year for the club following the end of the Arsene Wenger era, however, one man that arrived in the summer appears to have cast doubt on his long-term future at the Emirates Stadium.
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Stephan Lichtsteiner may have only joined Arsenal on a one-year deal in the summer, however, it appears he may have left the door open on a potential exit when the window reopens.
Speaking ahead of international duty with the Switzerland National Team, the 35-year-old revealed that talks had been made about a new deal, but he admitted that wants to play regularly so he can be in contention to make the squad for the European Championships in 2020.
He told Neue Zurcher Zeitung: “There were talks. We have to see if it suits both sides. Arsenal is a big club, I feel very well. But I want to play regularly with regard to the European Championship. It was okay this year. But when the coach says that he no longer counts on me, I have to worry.”
Lichtsteiner has played a bit-part role for Emery this season, although injuries really have not helped him this season, whilst he has not looked that good at times in regards to his performances.
The Swiss veteran has looked extremely vulnerable on occasions and a number of teams have been able to exploit that weakness and take advantage by being able to get past him and put in a number of balls into the box.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles has emerged as a consequence of the 35-year-old’s poor performances and appears to have been able to take the opportunity he has been offered with both hands, whilst Hector Bellerin will definitely be in contention once he returns from his horror injury.
There would have been some real excitement surrounding the acquisition of Lichtsteiner last summer, especially considering as he was a free transfer, as he managed to put in a number of quality performances for Juventus and Switzerland over the past few years.
However, he has looked a shadow of himself during his time at the Emirates Stadium and it is unlikely that Emery will see him deserving of a regular place within his first-team unless things seriously improve.
A new contract was always likely to be on the cards, however, it would be very difficult to justify a new deal and one that is unlikely to provide Lichtsteiner with any guarantees.
Arsenal fans, what do you make of Lichtsteiner? Would you like to see him sign a new deal or are you happy to see the back of him this summer? Join in with the discussion below by sharing your thoughts with us.
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