Gary Neville explains the ‘mistake’ Arsenal have made with key forward
Gary Neville has his say on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's contract situation at Arsenal
Gary Neville believes that Arsenal made a “mistake” by not tying Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang down to a four-year contract when they first signed him.
The future of the 30-year-old has been a constant talking point in recent weeks due to the fact that the forward has entered into the final year of his contract at The Emirates.
Aubameyang has been Arsenal’s key player up front in recent seasons and the forward has netted 17 goals and made one assist in the Premier League for the north London side so far this term.
Arsenal will be keen not to lose Aubameyang for nothing next summer and so they could be forced to move the forward on this summer if he does not commit to a new deal any time soon.
Former Manchester United defender Neville has admitted that he was surprised that Arsenal didn’t move to offer the forward a longer contract at The Emirates when they first signed him from Borussia Dortmund.
Speaking in an interview with Sky Sports, as quoted by Metro, Neville said: “Was he only given a three-year contract to start with?
“That’s the strange thing for me. If you pay £60m for someone, to have him leaving or in a position to leave… Arsenal find themselves in this position far too often.
“I think a three-year deal for a player who cost £60m… you’d at least want that fourth year so you can at least control him if he does well for the first two seasons.
“That’s the mistake that was made on day one. The fact they’re in this position now is through mistakes that were made previously.
“Arsenal are in a position where the player is going to call the shots.”
Arsenal are currently in ninth place in the Premier League table and eight points adrift of the top four with a game in hand.