Arsenal forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang believes his best position is as an out-and-out striker despite often being deployed as a winger.
The Gunners were defeated 3-1 by Manchester City at the weekend as they look to fight for their place in the Premier League’s top four.
Should Aubameyang be played solely as a striker? Here is what you need to know…
- Aubameyang joined the club in January 2018 from Borussia Dortmund for £56 million.
- The forward quickly cemented his place in the Arsenal starting XI under previous manager Arsene Wenger.
- The Gabon international has scored 28 goals in 45 appearances in all competitions for the Gunners to date.
- Aubameyang has revealed that he prefers playing as a striker.
- However, Arsenal boss Unai Emery regularly utilises the 29-year-old as a winger.
Speaking via Sky Sports, Aubameyang discussed his place within the Arsenal team and admitted that he sees himself as a striker rather than a player who operates from the wing.
He also stated that he prefers playing with a strike partner, a contrast to Emery’s use of just one man leading the line for the Gunners.
“My favourite role is playing striker, in front. I also like playing on the wing, but I think my best position is striker.
“I like to play with two up front, it’s nice because you can do some combinations with the other strikers.
“If the coach needs me on the right or on the left, it doesn’t matter, I go and I fight for the team, it’s no problem.”
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Rivals turned friends
With Aubameyang stating that he prefers playing in a front two, it’s clear to understand why he’d want that, especially at Arsenal.
Lining up alongside him would be fellow forward Alexandre Lacazette, who has also enjoyed a successful campaign this time around having struggled slightly last season.
Both former Ligue 1 players – Aubameyang with Saint Etienne and Lacazette with Lyon – the two forwards are now working together to fire in the goals Arsenal need to return to Champions League football.
They have a combined season total of 29 goals in all competitions so far this campaign, with Aubameyang happy to be playing alongside his teammate.
He said: “We were rivals before in France, I was not expecting for him to be my friend, but today is different. At first when I came here, he gave me a lot of confidence, because we spoke straight.
“We have the same vision about football, which is a good point between us, and that’s the point that started this friendship.
“When one comes to the ball, the other goes deep. It’s about filling in. You lift your head up and see he is going into space, it’s about feeling as well. If we have to give the ball to a guy in better space, you have to give him the ball. That’s what happens between us.”