Mikel Arteta Refused The Opportunity To Categorically Rule Aubameyang Out Of Arsenal’s Boxing Day Clash Against Norwich

The exiled striker, who was last week stripped of the captaincy following a disciplinary breach, has missed the recent wins over Southampton, West Ham, Leeds United and Sunderland.

Ahead of Arsenal’s three most recent fixtures, Arteta has opted to confirm Aubameyang’s absence in advance, but speaking at his pre-match press conference on Wednesday, the Spaniard declined the chance to rule out the possibility of the 32-year-old returning to the fold in time for the trip to Carrow Road.

Asked if the Gabon international could make his comeback against the Canaries, Arteta said: ‘We will go game by game and we will decide the squad as we get closer to the game.’

When it was pointed out that his answer was more open ended than the responses he has given to similar recent questions, he added: ‘That’s because we usually talk on MD-1, that’s when we decide the squad.’

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