Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is set to personally intervene in Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's contract talks to ensure the striker stays at the club, per The Daily Telegraph.
The Gabon international's current contract expires at the end of next season and he is yet to be offered an extension.
That is partly down to the COVID-19 pandemic, the report states, but Arteta is desperate to ensure the 30-year-old remains at the club for the foreseeable future.
Aubameyang has captained the Gunners throughout the second half of the season and, per Transfermarkt, has scored 20 goals in 32 outings in all competitions in 2019/20.
The Telegraph claims that Arteta is keen to build his Arsenal side around Aubameyang by surrounding him with young, hungry stars, and is planning to take a hands-on approach as the forward negotiates his future with the club.
He has attracted interest from the likes of Chelsea, Inter Milan, and Barcelona, per a Daily Mirror report, and the delay to contract talks has left the Gunners uncertain about his plans.
GIVEMESPORT'S Harry Sherlock says...
It would be a catastrophe of epic proportions for Arsenal to lose Aubameyang.
The striker has been the bright spot in a genuinely terrible season for the club, and losing him, be it this summer or next, would be a huge blow.
After all, Arteta's men are currently ninth, eight points off the top four; there is a very real possibility that they will miss out on European qualification altogether once the season restarts.
Some good news is needed, then, and Arteta intervening in discussions over Aubameyang's future can only be a good thing.
It will show the 30-year-old that he is loved and that he is wanted; that could be the key selling point as the Gunners attempt to convince him to stay put.
Arsenal fans will be desperately hoping this tactic works.
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