Arteta responds to Lacazette exit claims after benching Arsenal striker

Alexandre Lacazette has less than 10 months remaining on his contract with Arsenal and Mikel Arteta left him as an unused substitute for the Premier League victory over Norwich City last weekend

Mikel Arteta previews Burnley clash

Mikel Arteta has no plans to sell Alexandre Lacazette and insists the striker will be “instrumental” for Arsenal throughout the season.

The Spaniard’s defiant comments come after he benched Lacazette for the Premier League encounter with Norwich City last Saturday.

The Gunners picked up their first points of the season with a 1-0 victory over the Canaries thanks to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s winner.

Lacazette’s benching raised questions of his status at the Emirates, especially as he has entered the final 10 months of his contract.

But Arteta insists the Frenchman still has an important role to play and plenty of minutes are on the way.

Mikel Arteta declared Alexandre Lacazette still has a prominent place in his plans

“No, he’s fully involved,” Arteta told reporters on Thursday when quizzed on recent speculation claiming Lacazette could be on the way out.

“You give the reasons why he hasn’t played more minutes and he will be back to the form that he can achieve. I am sure that he will be instrumental in our success.”

Lacazette will hope to return to the starting XI for the trip to Burnley on Saturday as Arsenal look to make it back-to-back wins in the top flight.

The 30-year-old was the Gunners’ top scorer in the Premier League last season with 13 goals and in all competitions with 17.

Former Chelsea and Republic of Ireland striker Tony Cascarino was surprised to see him left out against Norwich as he believes Lacazette has a better eye for goal than Aubameyang.

“He (Arteta) made a lot of changes, Cascarino told talkSPORT . “The big one was the goalkeeper, he brought in (Aaron) Ramsdale for (Bernd) Leno which is a brave call.

Does Alexandre Lacazette have a future with Arsenal beyond the end of this season? Have your say in the comments.

“Lacazette still can’t get in the starting lineup and I find that quite strange. Out of all the Arsenal strikers, I know they’ve got Aubameyang, but I think he’s more clinical.

“And I think he can get 10 to 15 goals quite comfortably. It was a big three points after all the stuff surrounding it.”

Arteta’s line-up changes helped Arsenal bounce back from three consecutive Premier League defeats which they lost by an aggregate scoreline of 9-0.

Alexandre Lacazette’s future with Arsenal is uncertain


Getty Images)

Meanwhile, despite receiving the backing of his manager, reports in Italy claim Lacazette could be on the move in January.

Calciomercato assert AC Milan and Juventus are monitoring him with a view to a bargain January transfer.

La Liga duo Atletico Madrid and Sevilla are also keeping tabs on Lacazette’s situation, while a return to former club Lyon is also said to be a possibility.

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