Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher has explained why he left Arsenal star Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang out of his Premier League team of the season. Aubameyang is the second-leading scorer in the English top flight this term with 17 goals, two fewer than Leicester’s Jamie Vardy. However, Carragher says Aubameyang’s versatility meant he did not make the cut when he was compiling his best XI of the season.
The Arsenal captain often played centrally earlier in the season under former boss Unai Emery.
But since Mikel Arteta was appointed head coach in December, the Gabon international has frequently occupied a wide-left position, with either Alexandre Lacazette or Eddie Nketiah playing as the main centre-forward.
Carragher says he could not justify selecting Aubameyang ahead of Liverpool’s Sadio Mane or Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling.
And the pundit’s 4-3-3 formation only allowed for one striker, with City’s Sergio Aguero getting the nod.
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“I was thinking about Aubameyang and the only problem with Aubameyang is he plays in so many different positions across the front three that I thought it’s hard… he doesn’t play on the left all the time,” Carragher told Sky Sports.
“Sometimes he plays up front, sometimes he plays in a front two with Lacazette, now and again he plays on the right.
“So it’s hard to sort of put him in.
“It’s difficult to say he’s ahead of Mane or Sterling on the left, I couldn’t have just done that, I couldn’t justify that, and the same when I go to the centre-forward position.
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“I looked at Aubameyang, I looked at Vardy, [Roberto] Firmino but the one I went for was Aguero.
“I think he’s just behind Vardy in terms of goals scored but I don’t think he’s taken as many penalties and I think he’s played five or six games less than Jamie Vardy.
“Whenever he plays he’s just absolute dynamite, Aguero.”
Aubameyang is out of contract at Arsenal in the summer of 2021 and has been linked with a move away from the club.
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Former Gunners striker Kevin Campbell believes both Aubameyang and Lacazette will leave in the next transfer window.
Campbell told AFTV: “This is probably the biggest challenge for Mikel Arteta right now in his Arsenal managerial tenure and I don’t think he’s going to be able to keep Aubameyang. You know what, I think Aubameyang and Lacazette are going to go.
“I think both of them will go. I’m a straight talker and I say it as I see it.
“Aubameyang they can get something for, I think Lacazette, the way Arteta wants to play, doesn’t really fit the system.”
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