Mikel Arteta remains positive over Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s future after his leading contribution in Arsenal’s Community Shield shootout win over Liverpool.
Aubameyang fired the Gunners to their second Wembley triumph of the month as Arteta’s side overcame the Premier League champions in the traditional season curtain-raiser.
August started with the Gabon forward inspiring the Gunners to a record 14th FA Cup win and ended with him wrapping up another morale-boosting victory.
Doubts remain over the striker’s future with the 31-year-old’s current contract set to expire in less than 12 months but talks are ongoing.
Arteta said: “I keep saying the same thing [on Aubameyang’s future]. I try to do my job which is to convince him that he’s at the right place and the right environment here to produce moments like he’s done today and he did here just three weeks ago.
“I am very positive that he’s going to sign. There are a lot of things that are involved in a contract deal and we’re trying to solve them.
“I’m not worried [about the situation with Aubameyang]. We can only try to do as much as possible to convince the player or tell them what we think about him. We can put all the cards on the table to try to keep him here but afterwards it’s down to the player and the agent to agree to that.
“I think we’ve built a really good relationship between us and hopefully we can do it. Now, I am confident and I’m happy. I can see how he behaves every day and how much he works in training. It’s a really good sign.”
Aubameyang saw his fine curling effort cancelled out by Liverpool substitute Takumi Minamino as the match finished 1-1, but the Arsenal captain would seal another triumph by scoring the winning penalty in the subsequent shootout.
Arteta’s next challenge is to convert these excellent one-off performances in cup games at Wembley into sustained success in a Premier League season.
The Gunners finished 43 points off Liverpool last campaign, and Arteta added: “That’s a different task. We’ve beaten top teams consistently in the past two months but obviously after 10 months, the table showed last season that we are very, very far away.
“The gap is enormous and we have to try to close that gap as quickly as possible. In order to do that, there’s a lot of aspects in our game that we still have to improve.”