Mikel Arteta responds to Alexandre Lacaztte's comments over leaving Arsenal

Mikel Arteta expects Alexandre Lacazette to remain focused on Arsenal despite the forward holding talks with a number of clubs over a move this summer.

Lacazette is in the final months of his current deal at the Emirates and will become a free agent when that contract expires on 1 July.

Speaking to Canal+ on Sunday, the 30-year-old revealed he is in ‘discussions with a lot of clubs’, naming former side Lyon among those who have made enquiries.

Lacazette is Arsenal’s only senior centre forward following Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s departure in January with Eddie Nketiah also expected to leave the club when his contract expires at the end of the season.

Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday ahead of the midweek clash with Chelsea, Arteta reiterated that Arsenal will hold talks with the Frenchman at the end of the campaign.

‘His contract situation allows him to make a decision about his future,’ Arteta said.

‘We have expressed clearly that our intention is to speak in the summer once we know where we are and what we will do in the future together.

‘For the rest, I just want him fully focused on his duty which is to defend us in the best possible way which he has done all the time he is with us.’

Arsenal have lost their last three games on the bounce with their grip on a top four finish loosening as a result.

With the club back in a scrap for Champions League qualification, Arteta has no doubts over Lacazette’s commitment to the cause.

‘The contracts start and end on those days you have agreed on and put the pen down on,’ Arteta said.

‘You deal with the consequence of that and that is the reality of the contract he has and the commitment that he has with the football club.’

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