Paul Merson reckons Arsenal should risk letting Pierre-Emerick Aubamyeang leave on a free transfer.
Pierre-Emerick Aubamyeang will enter the final year of his Arsenal contract in the summer and as things stand today it is club policy to sell, however, not everyone is in agreement including former Gunner Paul Merson.
Merson reckons his goals are too valuable to let go and that the club should squeeze as much as possible from him.
Merson said on The Debate as quoted by the Metro: ‘If I was Arsenal I would keep him and tell him to give us what they can next season, get us back in the Champions League and then you can go for free.
‘It’s hard to buy goals and this guy is a natural goal-scorer. It’s hard to buy that.’
The best current alternative to the Gabonese hit-man within the club is probably Gabriel Martinelli but Merson is unsure if the teenager is yet ready to emulate Aubameyang goalscoring exploits.
Merson added: ‘I like Martinelli, he’s a top player, but you’re getting 15-20 goals guaranteed with Aubameyang, that’s some doing for Martinelli.
‘I can’t talk highly enough of Martinelli. He’s 18 and playing in the best league in the world. I’m a big fan of his. He will be a superstar.’
This is a tricky one for the club, especially after Arsenal head of football Raul Sanllehi publicly stated he will not allow a player to enter the final year of his contract.
Talking to the Sunday Telegraph last year Sanllehi said,
“In general, I do believe that a player’s contract should never go to the last year, as a policy,”
“But I don’t think I am inventing the wheel. Anybody could agree on that. Normally, the contracts of the players are for five years. You need to have a clear idea of what you want to do with that player when he is in the third year, at the latest.”
His credibility would be damaged if he follows Merson’s advice but at the same time, there is huge logic in what the former Arsenal midfielder is saying.
What should the club do? Let us know in the comments below.