Mikel Arteta axes Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from Arsenal starting XI for ‘disciplinary reasons’

Burnley v Arsenal - Premier League
The Gunners’ skipper only makes the bench against Tottenham (Picture: Getty)

Mikel Arteta has confirmed that captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been left out of Arsenal’s starting XI for the north London derby against Tottenham due to ‘disciplinary reasons’.

The Gunners’ skipper has rediscovered his scoring touch in recent weeks but was a shock absence from the team sheet at the Emirates for Sunday’s game.

When asked to explain why Aubameyang was not named in the starting line-up, Arteta only said that it related to a ‘disciplinary’ matter and refused to elaborate any further on the reason for his omission.

Although he was left out of the starting XI, Aubameyang did still make the bench for the must-win clash against Spurs – though it remains to be seen if Arteta will call on him.

Reacting to the news, Gary Lineker tweeted: ‘Blimey, Aubameyang left out for disciplinary reasons. That can’t be something trivial to be omitted for a game of this significance.’

In his place, Alexandre Lacazette is handed a start up top as one of three changes made by Arteta from the team that won in Athens against Olympiakos in the Europa League on Thursday night.

Hector Bellerin comes out of the team, replaced by Cedric Soares, while Willian – who got another assist in Greece – is replaced by Emile Smith Rowe.

Curiously, Nicolas Pepe does not make the matchday squad at all despite not having been mentioned as an injury doubt before the match.

More to follow…

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