Is Lacazette covering for ghost-like best-mate Aubameyang?

Aubameyang does not provide Arsenal with anything other than goals and it’s worrying by Yash

The minute is the 17th and West Ham United are celebrating their second goal of the match which is scored by Jarrod Bowen. Peter Drury, the commentator, comes up with the perfect elucidation of the game so far: “While they (Arsenal) slept, West Ham came to life.”

When Arsenal needed inspiration, few players spearheaded it. Arsenal’s top-scorer of the past two years Pierre Emerick Aubameyang was certainly not one of them.

The third goal for Arsenal, which completed the comeback, summed up the 32-year-old’s day. The Gunners scored a minute after Aubameyang was substituted out in place of Martinelli.

Arsenal fans were quick to point out the worrying trend that they have seen too often with their star man. When Arsenal play a superior team or a team which plays with a “low block”, Aubameyang has often been guilty of becoming a “ghostly figure.”

You don’t have to use analytics to see the former Borussia Dortmund striker cutting a lonely figure at the top end. It’s all well and good for the striker, who signed a three-year contract in September, when opposition teams attack and leave spaces in-behind.

But when that does not happen, the magic which Aubameyang possesses also does not happen. Poor link-up and hold up play, unsuccessful dribbles and no aerial presence hurts Arsenal more than what Mikel Arteta will confess in his post-match press conferences.

Aubameyang Stats v West Ham (from Whoscored)

Shots   0
On target   0
Key passes   0
Total passes  27
Dribbles 1
Pass accuracy 63%

During the game, Kieran Tierney was the player who cleared his lines in search of a center-forward who would hold the ball up and give the Gunners’ defense a breather and a way out. Even though Aubameyang is one of the tallest players at London Colney, he failed to provide an outlet to threaten the Hammers’ defense.


It was Alexander Lacazette doing the dirty stuff, dropping back and taking challenges on his shins and ankles. It was the Frenchman’s clever positional play in around the six-yard box which led to Arsenal breaking their duck.

The former Lyon man, two minutes later, then dropped in a false nine position, which attracted Craig Dawson and Issa Diop out of their position to man-mark him, only for the 29-year-old to play an incisive through ball to Bukayo Saka, who made an underwhelming effort at goal.

The start of the second half did not change the fortunes for Aubameyang. Within a minute, Lacazette was again involved in a positive team play, which needed a goal line clearance from West Ham’s Issa Diop.

And finally Lacazette rounded off an amazing performance by scoring from a Nicolas Pepe’s cross. His best mate would have been scrapping to take notes.

Lacazette offers more as a center-forward and Martinelli provides more as a right-winger than Aubameyang. When Aubameyang does not score, it is like Arsenal are a man down against some teams.

If Arteta wants to play cards in a match cleverly, he should consider dropping their captain against specific teams. Because a Premier League center-forward should be capable of doing many things.

Pep Guardiola dropping Manchester City’s all-time leading goal scorer Sergio Aguero at the beginning of his management career at Etihad is one such example. The Argentine regained his place after Pep got what he wanted from his center-forward.

However, we are yet to see Arteta making strong calls like that. Maybe he is on the lookout for a new center-forward this summer.

We can only be certain when the summer comes. Until then, let’s hope Aubameyang’s best mate Lacazette makes the 31-year-old’s weaknesses less apparent.


Yash Bisht

Connect with the writer via Twitter/Instagram: @yarsenal09

Tags Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang


  1. I think Lacazette is working hard to get a new contract from Arsenal or maybe he’s been showcasing his abilities to attract other clubs. Nonetheless, I agree with some comments on YouTube that Aubameyang needs some time on the bench, so he can focus on training first

  2. It is not the 1st time a player has been put onto gigantic wages …. maximum fame, wealth, importance, he’s made it big time …… and then he takes his foot off the pedal. Nothing left to strive for. Right now, Aubamayang is the one to bench – or sell !

  3. The coach ( arteta) is scared to repeat the same thing just like mesut with such wages and sit on bench.
    Arteta isn’t blind to see the skipper’s training? He’s worst in aerial duel, bad touchés, 2-3 times ball control, no dribbling or pace to beat opposition defenders, no tracking back to cover for defenders, most importantly, his body language is bad towards matches, no captain vibes, apparently, the worse arsenal captain I’ve ever seen.
    Arteta is a diplomatic coach who sacrifices Laca’s performance to aid auba’s weaknesses. Martinelli’s career is draining, just to field our non challant striker.
    His lack of goals made us sit in 10th position for almost 3 month and still counting.
    What a diplomatic coach he is.
    He won Chelsea 3-1 by fielding martinelli and co. No defender have fear for auba anymore, even stones outpaced him against man city. So what’s his threat, goals which doesn’t come?. Arteta benched laca for missing chances against Liverpool for straight 5 games ,but kept fielding our scorer who misses so many chances against Burnley, Olympicos, with no input against west ham.
    We better Sack him for better option, cos he has no check and balance on him like lampards’ Chelsea.

    Chelsea are on top with no bias from the coach ( tuchel) who want to prove himself with any f**king player. We’ll get result when he has someone to question him. We’ve kept on believing in his process and we had no endurance for unai. What a Shame to arsenal arteta with no 10 straight game unbeaten like unai did and surpasses.
    The worse arsenal team of the decade, of care isn’t taken, we’ll lose against Slavia, maybe until then we”ll believe in his process of diplomacy.

    1. may his bless’ve said it all..I wish arteta could see this and act fast…..No goal no Aubameyang..time he watch from the bench and learn how to play and help his team perhaps the captain should be taking off from him because he doesn’t fit in with him at all..our 3 can even do much more better in presence when he’s on the pitch without a goal than Aubameyang

  4. Sell Laca next summer and replace him with which top quality striker of 20 top League goals plus per season. who has a good resale value at the time of signing him? Please let one Striker’s name of Auba’s past goals scoring record be mentioned to Arsenal to sign him next summer to my reading or hearing.

    By the general look of things surrounding Auba in football terms. The Arsenal top notch striker is surprisingly having a poor goals scoring form in the PL for Arsena so far this season with just only 9 matches left for the club to play and grab a European football ticket next season.

    But is Auba the only top striker in the Premier League who is having a poor goals scoring form for his club this season? What of Jamie Vardy of Leicester City who scored over 20 PL goals for his club last season? How many PL goals has he scored for Leicester this season? Well, I don’t have the numbers.

    Any what of the other PL top striker Danny Ings of the Saints? Who scored more than 20 PL goals for the Saints last season. But how many goals has he scored in the PL for Southampton this season? I don’t have his numbers of goals scored in the PL so far this season. But has he and Vardy surpassed very well Auba’s goals tally in the PL for Arsenal after the round of week 29 matches into the campaign?

    Nevertheless, I am not making my comment to defend Auba for his having a poor PL goals scoring returns for Arsenal so far this season. Contrary to this, I am just highlighting a point generally. For, Arsenal will not progress in the PL table this season to the position they want to reach in the table if they rely on Auba’s poor goals scoring form so far this season to get to the position.

    But thank God! Laca and other Gunners are at hand stepping it up to save Arsenal season from completely falling away this season as the club are still amongst the top-four to top-six contenders contending to get a European football ticket next season. And are still in contention to win the Europa League Cup too this season as well. Pending when Auba will recover from his slum in goals scoring for the club before the season runs out. Auba has got to recover from his slum in form for Arsenal to restart scoring goals regularly again for the club in the PL and even in the ELC before this season comes to an end.

    But Laca and other players at the club should be able to continue to lift and lead Arsenal to win all the matches that are remaining for the club to play this season even if Auba does not recover. But hopefully, he will.

    1. Vardy has been scoring less this season but assisted more how many assists does Auba have?also Vardy’s off the ball contribution his run hsve benefited his teammates especially Ikenacho (i have probably misspelled his name sorry!)

  5. His last goal came against Burnley.. prior to that his brace kept us in europe. The way some are harping on you’d think he hadn’t scored in 6 months!!
    The situation isn’t ideal, but it just highlights how prolific he has been and how we’ve heavily relied on him in the past.
    And I’m sorry to say, but I’ve found it exhausting on here of late.. the constant moaning.. if some put as much effort into supporting as they do moaning we’d be all right!! And it wouldn’t surprise me if some hope his ‘drought’ carries on just so they can hound me on here gloating, as this seems to be a recurring theme…

    1. for me Lacca has been brilliant Sue. Fans forget he does not play every match from the start to end and his minutes go to Auba, Eddie and sometimes even Willian.
      And apart from goals they guy has always been hardworking and skillful and from what we see almost all players seems to like him.

      I am happy for him, he is making himself hard to replace, no one can blame him on that.

    2. And yes Auba scored important goals we are still mid season and he scored 14 and assisted once.
      Fans should give him a break.

    3. As I said before Sue, Arteta’s public admonishment of Auba was going to open pandora’s box, especially in light of his lower than usual goal-scoring tally this season…of course, the defensively-minded tactics were always going to have a negative impact on his in-game stats, but since this reality has never been properly and/or publicly addressed by the manager, especially in light of Auba’s significant wage increase, the manager’s recent “loose lips” were always going to exacerbate the situation…Arteta basically provided anyone looking for another scapegoat the necessary impetus to “justifiably” turn their attentions towards our world-class striker and maybe away from himself…like you said, it’s astonishing how quickly people forget what he’s done since arriving in North London…in fact, if anyone has earned the patience of the fans, it’s him, far more than our manager

      1. 👍 Yes, TRVL, absolutely gobsmacked at how most have turned on Auba, didn’t take long either!
        God help anyone else who doesn’t score for 3 games, hey?

        1. that’s why I was concerned that he chose to make a public pronouncement, under the ridiculous notion that he was keeping it “in-house”…especially considering the fact that he’s the captain…there’s definitely more to this story…to be clear, if he has been habitually tardy, he deserved to be admonished, but not in this fashion…clearly if his goal was to undermine Auba’s relationship with some within the fanbase, his plan seems to have worked

          1. Aubameyang has made his own bed. It is up to him to let his football do the talking. He wanted to be a “legend”; well it’s about time he started putting in for the team.

  6. In a lot of the good Auba’s seasons, his strength was finding the space in the box and accurate shots, and his dribbling was based on in box situations, speed in short distances. In short, his game was that he moves for the opportunities and take it with some flashes of hard work in tracking back.

    His linkup play including passes, holding the ball, headers, flare are not his strength points.

    For some reason, this season he seems to be unable to provide his strengths consistently.
    May be it is a stamina situation, like he is not ready physically or exhausted, may be he regrets staying, may be a change in plans, defenders finally figured it out, I am not sure. MA should know better.

    The current situation makes Arsenal playing with 10 players whenever he is on field.
    Arteta has to deal with it.

    For me Lacca has always been hardworking and has always had good games aside from scoring, this season his conversion ratio and goal to minutes ratio has improved. I am happy for him.

    I wish we had sold Auba, but it would not have made any sense, to sell our consistently best goal scorer, all fans were screaming to renew his contract, so I cannot blame anyone.

  7. Most teams in the EPL would be delighted to have a strike force of Saka, Lacca and Auba. Our real problems lie in defence and midfield.Odegaard and ESR have brought youth and creativity to the engine room but we are still 2/3 quality players short with a lack of pace being clearly evident in vital areas.These issues must be addressed before next season and Arteta simply must recruit a natural left footed back up for Tierney. It’s a question of priorities at a time when money is short save only for a handful of Clubs.Faced with the current financial climate our recruitment team need to be creative, and as an example they could offer Brighton, Nelson, AMN and Nketiah for Bissouma and Ben White with cash thrown in to the Brighton pot.

  8. I think it would be good for Auba to be taken out the limelight for a couple of weeks to concentrate on himself a bit of a well deserved rest to come back stronger he carried the team for 2 full seasons with family/contract… issues there was no way for him to carry on like this a break is what he needs!

    1. What does Auba have to say about his form this season I love him and want him back to his great wonderful self hope he stays and fights for his place you dont lose that over night

  9. The reality is Auba went to bed as soon as he signed his new contract. unfortunately it now appears he is the new Ozil. we should shift him in the next transfer window like Man U rid themselves of Alexis Sanchez.

Comments are closed

Top Blog Sponsors
JustArsenal Top Ten UK Blogs