The Gunners boss has been urged to cut ties with his club captain and look elsewhere as the fall-out from Aubameyang’s disciplinary breach continues to rumble on
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has been told signing Everton’sDominic Calvert-Lewin in January can help his side secure Champions League qualification this season.
Ex-Gunners star-turned-pundit Paul Merson feels his former side’s best bet of finishing in the coveted fourth spot hinge on whether they can entice the England international to the Emirates.
The north London-based outfit currently sit two points adrift off fourth-placed West Ham, though they face off with David Moyes’ side at home on Wednesday night in a game that could have a huge impact on both sides’ Champions League prospects.
After successive defeats away at Manchester United and Everton, Arsenal got their campaign back on track come Saturday afternoon with a comfortable 3-0 victory over struggling Southampton.
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However, despite a stellar performance it was the absence of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang that had everyone talking come the full-time whistle, the Gabon international dropped as punishment for breaking club rules.
Pressed on why Arsenal’s skipper was not in the squad, Arteta revealed: “Unfortunately, due to a disciplinary breach.
“I think we have been very consistent with the non-negotiables on the team we have set ourselves and as a club, he is not involved today.”
Prior to the 32-year-old falling foul of Arteta’s ‘non-negotiables’, the forward was in miserable form in front of goal, notching none in his last six games.
Given this is the second time Arteta has dropped Aubameyang right before a game as a means of punishing the former Borussia Dortmund man, many have speculated the relationship between the two is beyond repair.
Though Arteta has consistently denied those rumours, Merson feels it is time Arsenal look to replace Aubameyang by placing a ‘massive’ bid for Calvert-Lewin in the winter window.
The Toffees striker has had an injury-hit season but as he nears his return Merson feels securing his signature could be within the realms of possibility for his old side.
“Arsenal need to go out and buy Calvert-Lewin and put in a massive bid for him,’ he told Sky Sports. “They need a focal point up front who is good and strong.
“It’s the Arsenal. Where would he go? He can’t stay at Everton. Are they bigger Arsenal? Tell me a reason they are bigger club than Arsenal?
“Arsenal are going to finish above them; if Calvert-Lewin goes there they could get in the top four, surely.”
Given Alexandre Lacazette is expected to depart the Emirates after four years come the end of the season and Aubameyang’s decline in form, there is every chance Arsenal mount a serious move for Everton’s 24-year-old marksman.