Mikel Arteta was probed about Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s contract, while the striker himself offered hope of a new deal after Arsenal dismantled relegation-bound Norwich 4-0 at The Emirates on Wednesday night.
Aubameyang added two more goals to his tally – the first a simple tap-in for his 50th Premier League goal after Tim Krul dawdled in possession.
Granit Xhaka rifled past Krul to make it 2-0, before Aubameyang tucked away his second of the night after another huge rick.
And afterwards all the talk was of the Gabon striker’s future.
“I’m really happy that Bukayo signed. We’ll see. We’ll talk with the club and see what happens. I’m really focused on the games.
“Since Mikel is in we’re doing well. We’re working well. We have signs we’re improving,” said Aubameyang after his brace.
Operating at almost two goals every three games since his arrival, Aubameyang has lived up to expectations in north London
However, Aubameyang is at a crossroads in his career with just 12 months remaining on his contract and with talks at a standstill.
“The way he works everyday he decided to get better. Hopefully he’s here for longer,” said Arteta. “He can see what we are trying to do and hopefully he can evolve.”
Asked about Aubameyang’s contract further, he said: “I leave that to the football club. Auba knows really well my thoughts towards him, the project I want to create and that I want him in that.
“I am positive and I will remain positive but things have to progress.”
Arteta pleased with understanding
Speaking about the result, the Spaniard said: “It’s part of the process we have to expect. They are so willing, we convinced them even more this is the right direction.
“We cannot give anything to the opponent. I’m really pleased with the understanding of the game.”
While the Gunners boss also offered his thoughts on Bukayo Saka’s new deal.
“I think he is the player that represents every value at the football club. It was really important to keep him and from now I will demand more from him,” he said before also praising Xhaka.
“His commitment goes beyond anything normal. He’s a great example the way he lives this possession. I’m really happy we convinced him to stay and learn from the mistake he made.”
Dani Ceballos was also praised by the boss after starting alongside Xhaka in midfield.
“I really like Dani. He has a big personality to play and give us continuity to play without the ball too. He’s improved so much,” he added.