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Arsenal: Gary Neville claims there's a "sour relationship" between Mikel Arteta and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang - and that he could leave in January

Arsenal pair Mikel Arteta and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
(Image credit: PA)

Arsenal have a problem with the souring relationship between manager Mikel Arteta and skipper Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

That's according to Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville, who in the aftermath of Arsenal's woeful 2-1 loss to Everton away from home - missing the chance to climb back up to fifth in the table - the ex-Manchester United defender suggested that there was a deeper reason that Aubameyang was not brought onto the field until late on.

Arteta dropped his captain for the match, suggesting before the game that it was nothing more than rotation, despite the ropey form that the Gabonese forward had been suffering with. During the game, the Gunners boss opted to bring Eddie Nketiah into the game instead of Aubameyang when presented with the chance, after Gabriel Martinelli limped off the pitch.

The pair have previous of having fallen out, too - last season, the Spaniard disciplined his star striker ahead of the North London Derby for turning up late, dropping Aubameyang for the crunch match.

"There's always a little bit of a bug between Arteta and Aubameyang, I know he's the captain but he leaves him out and it feels like something a bit awkward," Neville said.

"It's going to cause a problem and I bet if he could get a bit of money for him and get someone else they would.

"And I bet if Aubameyang could he would move on as as well because it could turn a little sour."

Aubameyang signed a three-year contract with Arsenal at the beginning of last season. The talismanic figure of Arteta's FA Cup triumph, the 32-year-old became the highest-paid player at the club when he signed the deal. 

Because of the size of this deal and Aubameyang's age, Arsenal may struggle to move the player on - especially in a January window. With Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah expected to depart in the summer, too, it seems unlikely that Arsenal's primary goal threat would leave soon. 

The Gunners have been linked with Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Jonathan David in recent weeks. 

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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