Newcastle have been warned against a deal for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, with one pundit warning that the “worst part” of the Arsenal striker’s game is the thing Newcastle need most.
The Magpies are facing a crucial January transfer window as they look to avoid a damaging setback following their takeover. Indeed, they have ideas all across the pitch as they look to inspire a revival in their fortunes.
In defence, centre-back Sven Botman and full-back Kieran Trippier are key transfer targets. In midfield, English duo Dele Alli and Jesse Lingard have had links with a move to St James’ Park.
Attack was not as much of a pressing concern for manager Howe until Callum Wilson’s calf injury. Since then, though, Gunners striker Aubameyang has supposedly emerged on his radar.
Reports claim that Newcastle have contacted Arsenal over his availability. They want to propose a loan deal until the end of the season with a view to a permanent, £20million transfer.
Aubameyang remains frozen out by Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta following a disciplinary breach in December. As such, his future in north London is unclear.
According to Tony Cascarino, though, the fact that Aubameyang has been dropped shows exactly why Newcastle – who need everyone on the same page to fight relegation – should not sign him.
“He’s someone who is not in the Arsenal first-team, let’s get that right,” Cascarino told talkSPORT.
Newcastle want Arsenal striker Aubameyang in January
Newcastle want Aubameyang in January as they look to survive the drop
“Do you want a player who is going to show commitment, running, doing all the ugly stuff in the game that you’re going to need to survive? Does he do that very well? I’d say that’s the worst part of his game.
“Is he a quality footballer that can turn a game in a moment? At his best, yes. But when has he last done that regularly? Not very often this season, even towards the end of last season.”
Cascarino added: I don’t see this deal being a good one for Newcastle at all.
“I think it will be more of an air of is Aubameyang doing Newcastle a favour and I probably think, no, he’s not going to be doing them a favour.”
Aubameyang still not in favour
Back at Arsenal, Aubameyang has not played for Arsenal since a 2-1 defeat to Everton at the start of December.
The 32-year-old is now on international duty with Gabon for the Africa Cup of Nations.
Arteta said shortly after his decision to drop the player: “What I can say now is to make the decision that we made is really hurting, and it is still like this and it needs a bit of time to heal. So for now, he is not involved in the squad.
“Since I have been here [my relationship with him has been] really, really good. That is why it is painful.
“When we had to make that decision, it was because it was the right one to defend the interests of the football club.”
Aubameyang had scored seven goals in 15 games before he became frozen out.