Mikel Arteta has reacted to comments made by Jamie Redknapp after Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s performance against Manchester City.
The Arsenal captain had a poor game against the Premier League leaders and was met with scathing criticism by the Sky pundit who questioned his ability to still deliver in the big games.
“Aubameyang is past his best,” he said. “He’s going to have moments; he’s going to get hat-tricks. But when I watch him sometimes, it’s like he’s lost his superpower.
“I saw him run past people when he first came to the Premier League. I saw him run past people at Dortmund. Now I’m seeing a player who looks like he’s going to get bullied.”
Speaking ahead of Arsenal’s Europa League Round of 32 second leg against Benfica on Thursday though Arteta was keen to point out the fact that Aubameyang still had plenty to offer on the biggest stage.
“I don’t know I didn’t see those comments I heard about them,” said Arteta.
“I’m here to support every single player in the squad in the squad and all the time give them the best possible advice, play them in their qualities and when they have difficult stay right behind them. That’s what we’ve tried with Auba.”
The Gunners boss also backed his striker to continue to prove his doubters wrong on the pitch.
“I think the best way to talk is always is on the pitch,” he said.
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“Seven days before when he scored a hattrick, and he could have scored four or five, against Leeds he was again the main man.
“He could have scored another hattrick against Benfica with his qualities and it would have been different. At the end it’s about putting the ball in the back of the net for him and that’s how he gets judged.”