The France-born hitman has been in and out of the team, only featuring in 71% of Arsenal starting XIs this season.
It should come as no surprise that Dean Windass is unconvinced that Aubameyang has done enough to secure Arteta’s backing: “Don’t get me wrong, he’s a talented boy. But, like Lacazette, you can’t trust him”, said Windass in an interview with Transfer Tavern.
“They’re not going to dig in and they’re not going to pull you out if you’re getting beat. I wouldn’t want him in my team.
“Does he really want to be there? Does he think he’s better than Arsenal? That’s how it looks when he plays.”
Although ranked highly in relation to similar striking peers in Europe’s top leagues for goals (excluding penalties), Aubameyang has only managed to muster an average of 1.6 shot-creating moves per game.
Moreover, the Gabon international is in a slump in terms of linking up with his teammates. He also ranks dramatically lower than similar strikers for his pass success rate, his dribbles and his progressive carries of the ball.
As a striker, the creative burden in pushing up the pitch is not Aubameyang’s primary responsibility, but it does indicate a lack of hard work off the ball in a poacher-style approach.
His goal tally – perhaps the most telling stat – is the most damning.
Aubameyang will need to improve soon, both mentally and on the pitch, if he is to hit the highs of bygone seasons.