Lawrenson rates Arsenal’s top-four chances after getting rid of Aubameyang



Pierre Emerick Aubameyang has now signed for Barcelona (Picture: Xavi Urgeles/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)

Mark Lawrenson thinks Arsenal are better off without ‘rotten egg’ Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang but a top-four finish is still unlikely.

Aubameyang’s difficult few months in north London, that saw him stripped of the captaincy by Mikel Arteta, came to an end in recent days after he signed for Barcelona.

His departure comes just over 12 months after Mesut Ozil completed his acrimonious departure following a falling out with Arteta also.

Liverpool legend Lawrenson reckons the Gabon international’s exit is good news for Arsenal going forward.

‘Occasionally you get a rotten egg such is life, and you only need one in a dressing room,’ Lawrenson FreeSuperTips.

‘It’s like Groundhog Day for Arsenal, look at Mesut Ozil, it’s virtually exactly the same situation.

‘They handed him an unbelievable contract in terms of salary and the length of contract and it’s as if he down tooled and I feel the exact same way about Aubameyang.

Ozil and Aubameyang

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mesut Ozil both fell out with Mikel Arteta (Picture: Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

‘I think Arsenal have done well on getting him out of the building because Arteta can now just concentrate on the players he’s got to work with.’

Arsenal currently sit sixth in the Premier League table, two points off fourth-placed Manchester United, with their next match against Wolves on Thursday.

The battle for Champions League football already looks set to go down to the wire but Lawrenson has questioned the mental strength of Arteta’s players going into the business end of the season.

‘There was an opportunity there for Arsenal, but even without the January transfer window you look at Arsenal and after a while you go same old Arsenal,’ he said.

‘They’ll win a few games, go unbeaten for seven or eight games and then go get turned over by somebody.

‘I just don’t think there’s great mental strength in that team and I think in there lies the problem.

‘There’s a lot of ability, but they keep having a hiccup and if you want to finish fourth in this league, then you can’t afford to do that.’

MORE : ‘Give him a go’ – Paul Merson urges Mikel Arteta to play Arsenal’s Gabriel Martinelli up front instead of Alexandre Lacazette

MORE : Liverpool and Man City monitoring Bukayo Saka and could make move for winger if Arsenal fail to make top four

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