Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang hails Arsenal team-mates for their support after his mother’s health scare… and insists ‘it’s time to get my smile back’ following first Premier League hat-trick in win against Leeds
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang made his first start since January 19 against Leeds
- The Arsenal captain was absent after returning to spend time with his ill mother
- Aubameyang repaid boss Mikel Arteta after being granted compassionate leave
- The striker thanked his Arsenal team-mates for their support during the scare
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang thanked his Arsenal team-mates for their support as he returned to the starting XI for the first time since returning from his stricken mother’s bedside.
The Gunners captain marked his first start since January 19th with a match-winning hat-trick against Leeds.
Mikel Arteta afforded his star striker compassionate leave to be with his sick mother, and Aubameyang repaid his manager’s humanity with this vintage display.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang hailed his Arsenal team-mates after a fine showing against Leeds
‘Everybody around the club was giving me and my mum a lot of love. I received a lot of messages. I’m proud to be part of this club,’ said Aubameyang.
‘This means a lot to me. I’m a guy who always works hard and tries to give my best for my family and my team.
‘It’s been a tough time but it’s time to get my smile back.
Aubameyang made his first start since January 19 on Sunday after his mother’s health scare
The Arsenal captain explained the situation to supporters while absent and with his mother
‘I’m really happy. My kids are going to be happy because they will get the match ball.
‘We knew it would be a hard game. They never gave up. They fought a lot. It was good game management.
‘It was important to show that this our home, this is where we have to win games, and we did it.’
On his side’s win, Arteta said: ‘I’m very pleased with the result and very, very happy with the performance, especially in the first half against a fantastic team that make life so difficult for you.
Aubameyang netted his first Premier League hat-trick and repaid boss Mikel Arteta’s humanity
‘We handled the situations really well. At half time I said they will never give up and that’s what Leeds did, they threw everything at us.
‘Every action you have to be full gas and paying so much attention. In any situation they can take advantage of it.
‘You have to be very precise to find the next pass and find the movement.
‘The amount of chances we created and the type of goals we scored as well, I’m really pleased. Overall there are a lot of positives.’
Aubameyang explained post-match that his children would get his well-deserved hat-trick ball
Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa added: ‘The victory for Arsenal was fair but when we were 4-2 we had two or three options.
‘The two halves were very different. In the first half we could have finished with a smaller margin because we could have controlled the danger they created better.
‘In the second half even though we started by conceding another goal we fought a lot to try and get back into the game.
‘We could have got the third goal and we could have made the end of the game different.’
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