Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has decided to drop Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang against Slavia Prague – and some of the club’s fans on Twitter have given their instant reaction to the significant piece of team news.
The Gunners are preparing for a crucial match against Czech side Slavia on Thursday night.
It’s the first leg of the Europa League quarter-finals, which is a competition that the north London club really need to win to realistically get into Europe for next season due to poor domestic form.
Arsenal have released their team (official Twitter account) ahead of the 8pm kick-off, and it’s an eye-catching one.
Gunners captain Aubameyang has surprisingly been named with the substitutes.
📋 Tonight's team news…
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) April 8, 2021
The 31-year-old forward started in the weekend’s 3-0 Premier League defeat to Liverpool, and Arteta has decided to make the bold decision to drop him out of the XI for arguably the club’s biggest game of the season so far.
He’s scored 14 goals in 32 games across all competitions this season, but the speedster has looked anonymous at times when he’s not been on the scoresheet.
A selection of Arsenal fans on social media are stunned by the Aubameyang decision, but some have praised Arteta for sticking his neck on the line.
There will be all eyes on the front four of Alexandre Lacazette, Willian, Emile Smith Rowe and Bukayo Saka to see how they perform without Aubameyang.
Here are some Gunners fans discussing the controversial line-up:
Aubameyang has played No.9 recently too and been poor. Tough decision for Arteta especially with his disciplinary issues and poor body language. #AFC
— Floyd (@Floyd_AFC) April 8, 2021
Arteta dropping Aubameyang for arguably the most important match of Arsenal's season pic.twitter.com/6AZ0D6nnUj
— Jake Lahut (@JakeLahut) April 8, 2021
Another reason why Edu and Arteta don't have sense. Gotta decide what to do about Aubameyang if you're not going to start him in every game.
— Hernandez (@Femi_hernandez) April 8, 2021
Aubameyang dropped is a massive statement.
Will Arteta sell both our strikers in the summer as they're clearly not good enough?
I hope so…
— N C (@ElMaestro24_) April 8, 2021
Aubameyang dropped is a huge statement from Arteta. In a way, I'm impressed.
— Kunal (@AFFILIIATION) April 8, 2021
Huge statement from Arteta to drop Aubameyang. But given recent form, can’t say it isn’t deserved. Lacazette’s always been our best big game player, so need a big performance from him today
— Ganso (@GansoArsenal) April 8, 2021
Aubameyang dropped, but Willian starts. Pepe and Martinelli on the bench. Arteta is partially mad.
— Ifreke Inyang (@Ifreke) April 8, 2021
I do think Arteta risks aggravating the Aubameyang situation and making it something it need not be. Oh well, it’s a 180-minute tie and if it works it works.
— Daniel Zeqiri (@ZeqiriDan) April 8, 2021