Alexandre Lacazette is reportedly set to join Atletico Madrid this summer, should Arsenal captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang sign a new contract.
Lacazette joined Arsenal in the summer of 2017 from Lyon, but has often been on the substitutes’ bench since manager Mikel Arteta’s arrival at the club in December as successor to Unai Emery.
And should Aubameyang, as expected, sign a new deal in the coming weeks, 29-year-old Lacazette could move to Spain and join up with Diego Simeone’s side for £30million, according to the Daily Star.
The report details that the French striker almost joined Atletico in 2017, before the Spanish side were hit with a transfer ban by FIFA.
Lacazette is also reportedly unhappy at Arteta focusing his future plans around Aubameyang, particularly with young strikers on the periphery of the first-team too.
Both Eddie Nketiah and Gabriel Martinelli have impressed at different points throughout the course of this season and where Lacazette fits moving forward remains up for debate.
The Gunners’ potential signing of free agent Willian, following his release from Chelsea, also slims Lacazette’s chance of regularly starting minutes week in, week out.
Yet Lacazette did start in last week’s FA Cup final victory over the Blues, in which Aubameyang scored a match-winning double.
The Gabonese forward has less than 12 months on his contract and Arsenal run the risk of losing their talismanic captain for nothing next summer.
Aubameyang earns around £180,000-a-week but wants upwards of £250,000-a-week before he will consider extending his stay.
Arteta knows he must sell players this summer to generate the money required to land first-choice transfer targets — and he could even offload right back Hector Bellerin if a sizeable offer is made.
Sokratis, Matteo Guendouzi, Lucas Torreira, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Sead Kolasinac, as well as Shkodran Mustafi and Rob Holding, are also in the shop window.
The club also want to sell Mesut Ozil, but their hopes of offloading the former Germany playmaker — and his £350,000-a-week salary — appear slim after his agent insisted Ozil would see out the final season of his contract.