Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang says it is up to Arsenal to convince him to sign a new deal and concedes a decision over his future will possibly be the biggest of his career.
The Arsenal captain, who turns 31 on June 18, believes he faces a “turning point” in his career, with his contract at the Emirates due to expire in the summer of 2021.
Asked whether he had received an offer of a new deal by Arsenal, Aubameyang told reporters “I haven’t had any offers recently, of course, but I did speak to the club quite a few months ago, and they know why nothing has happened yet.
“The ball is in their court now, so it’s down to them to do their bit and we’ll see how it goes.
“As I’ve said, it’s a turning point in my career and I want to be honest with everyone: It’ll certainly be a very difficult decision to make and I haven’t yet made it.
“We’ll see. I think it might be the most important choice of my career.”
Aubameyang, who joined Arsenal from Borussia Dortmund in January 2018 for a fee in the region of £60m, says his hunger to win trophies will carry on – whether or not he decides to extend his stay in North London beyond next season.
“Every competitive player dreams of winning trophies,” he added.
“It’s important. People will ask, ‘Does he want to win them at Arsenal or somewhere else?’
“As I said, time will tell. The ball is in the club’s court.
“I certainly want to win trophies and everyone knows that. Regardless of my choice, I’ll keep fighting to win trophies.”
Arsenal face strong competition for European qualification, with eight points separating them in ninth place from fourth-placed Chelsea, with a game in hand, and Aubameyang is aware of the need for a quick start on the resumption of the league season.
Mikel Arteta, whose side are also still in the FA Cup, will take his squad to the Eithad Stadium on Wednesday, live on Sky Sports, as the Spaniard aims to maintain their unbeaten Premier League record in 2020.
Asked for his ambitions at Arsenal over the coming weeks and months, Aubameyang replied: “I think it’ll be important to restart strongly, but it won’t be simple as we have City in our first game.
“But in more general terms, we hope we can finish the season well, although fans won’t be in attendance unfortunately.
“I hope we finish the campaign well.”
“At this stage, there’s no doubt about it, Aubameyang is too good for Arsenal.
“We had that, at times, at Liverpool with maybe Luis Suarez and certain players that you have in your squad. You are desperate to keep hold of them because you are thinking as a club you want to build around this player and if that player goes you feel like you’re starting again.
“That’s the problem you have trying to get back into the top four and establishing yourselves again as Arsenal are trying to do.
“That will be a decision for them. It’s okay saying if he doesn’t want to be there let him go. I hear all this but it’s not easy when you are at that club and you have a player of such star quality, who is probably nailed on this season and next season to be there or thereabouts for the golden boot.
“It’s not easy to find goal scorers. I’d keep Aubameyang and see what you could do. Could you bring players in around that, hopefully have a successful season and maybe in the next 12 months convince him to stay?
“If not, I think it gives Arsenal a greater chance of getting back into the top four and that’s where they need to be.”
Former Manchester United striker Alan Smith says “He’s been so important to this Arsenal side simply because of his goals output. He’s got a fantastic scoring ratio and is one of the best finishers in the Premier League. In my opinion, he’s one of the best finishers in the game at the moment.
He’s got that scoring knack and can score all types of goals. There aren’t many of those types of players around and if you can find one, they cost an awful lot of money. That’s what makes the situation with Aubameyang very difficult for Arsenal.
In an ideal world, you wouldn’t want to lose a player like that”, He concluded.