Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta breaks silence on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang disciplinary issue

Arsneal: Arteta sends Aubameyang message over critics

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Mikel Arteta has opened up on why Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was named on the bench for Arsenal’s north London derby against Tottenham on Sunday. Aubameyang has been Arsenal’s main man for several years now despite not being in the best of form this season.

Arteta has recently moved the Gabon international back into the middle with forward scoring four in as many Premier League games.

But the striker was left out of the starting line-up against Tottenham which caused a stir among supporters.

Instead, Alexandre Lacazette was given the nod to lead the attack with Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe playing either side.

Arteta admitted before the game that Aubameang was initially going to be in his starting line-up.

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But the Arsenal boss confirmed reports that the decision to drop Aubameyang was due to “disciplinary” reasons.

“He was going to start the game but we had a disciplinary issue,” Arteta said.

“We have drawn the line and we move on. He’s on the bench.”

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When pressed further for more information on the reason behind benching Aubameyang, Arteta refused to give anything away.

“No. Obviously we keep that internally,” he added.

“We have our process that we have to respect every game and that’s it.

“It’s a decision we made after evaluating everything, what he’s done and that’s it.”

Arsenal headed into the game on the back of an impressive win over Olympiakos earlier in the week.

Goals from Martin Odegaard, Gabriel and Mohamed Elneny gave Arsenal a 3-1 victory in the first leg of their last-16 Europa League tie.

But while performances in Europe have been good in recent weeks, Arteta’s side have struggled in the Premier League.

They’ve won just two of their last seven matches which has left them 10th in the table.

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