A couple of weeks ago, Mikel Arteta confirmed he’d look to have a conversation with Alex Lacazette about his future.
That chat looks set to take place when the season ends and it seems pretty clear that the boss, if he gets his way, will retain the services of the Frenchman.
Under contract until 2022, the striker has been pinpointed in some quarters as a possible candidate to sell this summer in order to raise funds for a squad rebuild. Atletico Madrid, Inter Milan and Juventus have both been touted as suitors.
Facing the media ahead of Saturday’s FA Cup semi-final clash with Manchester City, the boss was asked about the 29-year-old’s situation.
“I really like Alex,” he said. “I said that even before I joined here he’s the type of striker that I really like.
“He had periods where he was really unlucky, he was having the chances and not converting, which he was not used to.
“The way he can link play…he’s a massive competitor, he hates to lose, he goes for every ball, you see in every challenge how he is ready to go, how hard he works and he’s a very intelligent player. I am really happy with him.
As if to emphasise his point, he asked rhetorically: “Why would I want to lose a player like him? I’m really happy with him.”
This morning, Lacazette revealed that contract talk can be annoying, which is why he’s stopped asking Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang about his own situation.
Once the season is over and we know if we have Europa League football or not, things may become a little clearer on both fronts.