The Gunners forward has seen his role as club captain stripped from him this week after his latest disciplinary breach and has not featured for the side in the two games since
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is standing firm in his stance against former club captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang after the Gabon international was stripped of the armband before the recent game against West Ham.
Three days later and the club released a statement confirming the 32-year-old’s demotion from his role as skipper and was not in contention for the Hammers clash, sparking a wave of speculation as to when he would don the Arsenal shirt again.
However, more recent reports suggest that day may never come as the Gabon international is currently banished from first-team training as per the Daily Mail, the clearest indicator Aubameyang’s days in north London look numbered.
In what is regarded as one of the stricter punishment in professional senior football, Aubameyang has been forced to train alone, away from his teammates.
Arteta has already confirmed the striker is not in contention for the squad to face Leeds on Saturday evening and the suspension from all first-team action is likely to still be in place when he leaves for the Africa Cup of Nations next month.
While a date for Aubameyang’s release from club duties so he can join up his with international teammates in Cameroon remains unclear, he will not be used by Arteta before then.
As a result, Aubameyang is desperate to leave for the tournament as soon as possible, training with the Gunners to keep his fitness up for his country knowing full-well it will not be put to use with Arsenal.
The public nature of his demise is something Aubameyang is unhappy with and in turn has led to speculation that the 32-year-old could seek pastures new come the January transfer window.
Arteta is thought to be on board with letting his former captain depart for good, despite Aubameyang only signing a mega-money contract extension as recently as last year.
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His astronomical wage could make it difficult to cut ties, even if Arsenal were willing to let him walk away for nothing – it would be a struggle trying to find another side willing to match his eye-watering salary.
La Liga giants Barcelona are one of Aubameyang’s potential suitors, but that deal could come in the form of a temporary loan spell with an option to buy at the end.
It seems more likely the striker departs in the summer window, when clubs tend to do the bulk of their business, which means Aubameyang could have a very awkward second-half of the season still in Arsenal colours.