Arsenal striker Alexandre Lacazette will enter the final year of his contract at the end of this season.
Signed for £47.7m in the summer of 2017, the Frenchman has made 155 appearances, scoring 58 goals and providing his teammates with 28 assists. But has he lived up to his price tag?
At times he’s looked like a top-class striker, scored important goals and his link up play with those around him, Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe in particular, has been impressive of late. However, if you were to summarise his Arsenal career so far, the word ‘inconsistency’ would be apt.
So should the Gunners be looking to secure the Frenchman’s future beyond next season or instead cash in on the 29-year-old?
Just six months after Lacazette’s arrival, Alexis Sanchez departed the Emirates Stadium and in came Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Over the years, many Arsenal fans have called for the pair to be deployed as a traditional front two but there has very rarely been an appetite to do so from recent managers.
As such, Arsenal find themselves in a position where they’re seemingly unable to get the maximum out of both players simultaneously and given the pair cost a combined £105m that’s undoubtedly been an issue.
Comparatively speaking, Aubameyang’s goal record is far superior to Lacazette‘s. The Gabonese forward has scored an impressive 81 goals in 134 appearances whereas the Frenchman has managed far less despite having played more games.
When you consider the club broke the bank to tie Aubameyang down to a new contract during the summer, you do wonder whether Lacazette still has a future in north London. In terms of his monetary value, with a season remaining on his contract, Arsenal would be wise to cash in on the centre forward this coming summer and recuperate some of the funds invested in him rather than allowing him to leave on a free transfer.
In recent weeks, Mikel Arteta has preferred to start Aubameyang through the middle and that doesn’t bode well for Lacazette and his future Arsenal prospects. A combination of all of the above plus the current financial state of the club means they simply cannot afford to allow him to leave for free.
During his time with the club, he has shown himself to be a top class striker at times but unfortunately there have been goal droughts and dramatic dips in form.
While he’s been a good option, it’s difficult to pinpoint a period in which he has shown himself to be an indispensable member of the team.