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Tue, 21 Jan 2020 13:57 GMT

Arteta Says Players Must Step Up in Aubameyang’s Absence


7Dnews London - AFP

Mon, 13 Jan 2020 22:24 GMT

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has called on Nicolas Pepe and Alexandre Lacazette to step up in Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang’s absence.

The Gabon striker has scored 14 of Arsenal’s 29 goals in the Premier League this season but is now set to miss the next three games after getting sent off during the Gunner’s 1-1 draw with Crystal Palace on Saturday, January 11th.

The draw left Arsenal in tenth place, 11 points behind their fourth-place target, Chelsea.

Aubameyang has been the bright spark of the club this season and his goals have saved the team from being even further down in the table. News of his three-game suspension could result in the club dropping further down the table in the coming weeks.

AFP reported that Arteta, who has slightly revived the club since taking over as managers at the end of December, called on his other strikers to fill the void during Aubameyang’s suspension.

"They have to make a step forward now," he said. "If he (Aubameyang) is not able to score the goals, then someone else has to do it and I want to see them react."

Along with Pepe and Lacazette, the Arsenal boss could call on Brazilian teenager Gabriel Martinelli, who has scored eight goals in 19 appearances this season.

Eddie Nketiah has also returned from his loan spell at Leeds United and will be hoping to get a chance on the Arsenal first team.