Arsenal captains and controversy: they're bedfellows, aren't they? Alexandre Lacazette is the latest to have cheesed off the Gunners faithful with exit comments.
Mikel Arteta's side slumped to a third consecutive defeat this weekend away to midtable Southampton, after dreary losses to Brighton and Crystal Palace in recent weeks. Stand-in captain Lacazette – granted the armband when Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was stripped of the honour in December – was absent via illness.
But that hasn't stopped the French striker from starting a new week by upsetting his own fans with an interview in which he has all but confirmed he will leave this summer.
"I am in discussions with a lot of clubs," Lacazette told Canal Plus (opens in new tab), who has been heavily linked with a return to Lyon – who Arsenal signed the forward from back in 2017.
"I have never cut contact with Lyon since I left," the 29-year-old confirmed, adding "I try to return to the club once or twice a year to see the medical staff because we are really close. Lyon know that I am free, they have to come with a proposal.
"I want to play in Europe, it’s been a long time since I played in the Champions League, I’m missing it. It’s a little more complicated, nothing is impossible in life, but it’s a little more complicated."
Arsenal fans have since taken to social media to lambast their striker over the interview, with many claiming that the striker has not been playing at a Champions League level this season.
Lacazette has four goals all season, two of them coming from the penalty spot.
One of the most senior players, captain of the club is coming out doing interviews about his next move. It shows where Lacazette is mentally and it’s not at Arsenal. This is the guy who’s been given the keys to fire us to the #UCL?April 18, 2022
Lacazette has less npg than an interim manager yet is pining for ucl football. OK then.April 18, 2022
Lacazette has given interviews where he says how much he misses Champions League football, and that he's open to leave for a European cup playing team. I feel its not the right time to make such statements when we're in vital phase of the season.What's your opinion? Discuss. pic.twitter.com/GqiqiwzW1dApril 18, 2022
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Arsenal continue to be linked to new forwards, with Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah both out of contract at the end of this season. Paulo Dybala is one player who has reportedly caught the eye, while Cody Gakpo has been linked with a move this summer, too.
Florian Grillitsch has been talked about in relation to a move, a Premier League right-back has been linked, while the likes of Lucas Paqueta and Ruben have both been touted for Emirates transfers. In terms of outgoings, there are reports linking key defender Gabriel with a departure to Barcelona this summer.
Nacho Monreal, meanwhile, recently discussed Mesut Ozil's exit from the club with FFT.
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Mark White has been a staff writer on FourFourTwo since joining in January 2020, writing pieces for both online and the magazine. Over his time on the brand, he has interviewed the likes of Aaron Ramsdale and Jack Wilshere, written pieces ranging on subjects from Bobby Robson's season at Barcelona to Robinho's career, and has been to the FA Cup and League Cup finals, working for FFT.
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