Press conference

Arteta on Aubameyang’s new deal: read every word

By Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's own admission, Mikel Arteta was central to his decision to sign a new contract with us.

So what was our manager's reaction to the news that it is finally done - and how does he see the future with the Gabon international signed up for another three years?

This is everything Arteta told the media on Friday:

on how good is it to have finally sorted Auba’s future…
Obviously In knew what was coming so I was bit more relaxed, but I am really pleased to have convinced Auba to stay at our club as well in the terms that we have done, and with the passion and determination that him and the people around him showed to stay at our club, how happy they are with what we have achieved and as well really pleased to see the reaction of everyone, firstly here at Colney at our club and as well our fans, to keep him.

on how has Auba been to work with off the pitch...
It is enjoy to work with him, I think we have a really transparent relationship. We have been really clear with each other on what we were trying to do, how big Auba was to my plans for now and for the future and the way he trains, the way he behaves himself and the way he performs is exactly what I want from him. I want him to do that consistently for the next few years.

on whether this was the one deal he wanted to do this summer...
Yes, it took a lot of work and a lot of effort from the club, so thank you very much for supporting us as it was key to achieving it. It was a thing that was worrying me because it is so hard to find a replacement of a striker of that calibre, so I am really pleased.

on the role Mikel played in convincing Auba to stay...
I think the big reason Auba is staying is because we have an incredible football team, football club, we have some fantastic people working here and because he feels how much love he has from the fans. I played my part, which is part of my job, to try to explain to him what we are trying to do and how important he would be while we are building and that is it. The club has to take credit for that and the people who have been able to put a project and a package to him to stay at the club.

on offers from other big European clubs for Auba...
Yes, but the size of our clubs is as big as those names. That is what I am saying, the most important thing is the club, what we inspire, who we are as a club and what we can achieve in the future as well, and how we can explain what we are trying to do so the players believe in our project.

on the boost Auba's re-signing has on the other players...
It was a big boost because everyone was hoping for Auba to stay but it was creating some uncertainty around the place and obviously it is great to finish that speculation, move on and find some more stability.

on the statement the deal gives to the rest of the game about Arsenal...
I don't know, we made the decision because we believed he is the best for our football club. We are not trying to send any statement, just trying to get the right decisions and the right people around us to be as successful as we can.

on what Auba means by trying to become an Arsenal legend...
Well, I think he's done some great things since he's been here, individually some of the things he has achieved in terms of goals and assists, it's been incredible. Now we have to take it to the collective and take it to club level and in order to achieve that there are a lot of small things that you have to do every day to achieve them. Auba is very aware of that and if we are able to take the person and the player into the next level, I think we are all going to benefit from that and the day that he leaves the football club I think it will be in a different way.

on the long-term project now that Auba has ended speculation on his future...
Well, you can have a lot of great thoughts about the long-term in football but the reality is that the daily decisions, results and things that happen that are sometimes out of your control, that's what determines a lot of the future. What I find at the moment is that we are all on board, from the top of the club with the ownership, with all of the board, with Edu, myself and the staff around us, of what we are trying to do. We are very united and I feel we are in a strong position to move forward in the future. But again, our demands are tomorrow and today in training and we try to maintain and improve the team as much as we can and create a sustainable model that brings success and brings joy and happiness to our fans.

on whether Auba is our penalty taker despite Willian's ability...
Yes, Auba will start taking the penalties.

on how he keeps motivating Auba now he has signed a new contract...
Before motivating them after they sign the contract, I try to do the opposite thing. I try to make sure that I can motivate them and in order to do that I have to get to know the player really well and the people around him. What he needs in order to be as motivated and not with flat feet, to try to improve and as well, the player has to see that he has some room for improvement and that we are the right people for helping him to achieve that. And to be fair, all those boxes are ticked with Auba so I think we will be able to do that with him.

on whether he ever doubted that Aubameyang would sign a new deal…
To be fair, at the start when I joined I wasn’t as positive as I was a few weeks ago. Obviously financially we were in a position where it was difficult to get what we wanted to get and I think Auba had his doubts at the time - but things evolved in a natural way and I had a feeling that the club wanted to move forward. I had a feeling that Auba wanted to stay here and we were just trying to put those things together, and that can sometimes take some time, but if the outcome is what we both wanted then we’re happy.

on whether Auba signing his new contract will attract other players…
I don’t know, but certainly I think it’s a decision that’s been received in a really positive way outside the football club and with a very clear direction that we want to maintain and look after our better players, as well as promoting and challenging our young players.

on whether it shows that Arsenal are serious…
Yeah, we had to do some structural remodelling because we couldn’t maintain the size of the club with what’s happened in the last three years and the coronavirus, but we cannot forget that we’re Arsenal Football Club and our history demands success and excellence. And in order to achieve that, whether it’s our people, our staff, or our players, we have to maintain the quality as high as possible in order to maintain the best possible chance to be successful.

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