Mikel Arteta insisted that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will sign a new contract at Arsenal after inspiring the team with two goals to win a record 14th FA Cup for the club.
The Arsenal captain then dropped the trophy in the special socially distanced self-presentation ceremony.
Aubameyang, who converted a first-half penalty he had won and then scored a superb second in the 67th minute to seal the win, has one more year left on his deal and has yet to commit to the club for next season.
Mikel Arteta hopes Cup triumph will convince Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to stay at Arsenal
But Arteta says his display at Wembley will secure his future at the club. ‘He’ll stay,’ said Arteta. ‘He knows what I think and that I want to build the squad around him. Everything is based on my discussions with him and his people. Nothing is done yet but I hope we will hear something soon.
‘The players all admire him here and we value him so much. He wants to stay. It’s about getting the deal done but moments like this will help him realise that we are on the right path and he’s a big part of it. He’s loved by everyone at the club, so hopefully he can continue with us.’
Arteta laughed off his clumsiness with the cup saying: ‘He needs more experience with trophies. We can get him used to that.
Top scorer Aubameyang has less than a year to run on his contract at the Emirates
‘Big games require big moments for big players and he delivered that in the semi-final and he’s done it again in the final. Some were questioning that he could not do it in big games: there we go. He was a big part in delivering this trophy.’
Arteta clinched his first trophy after taking over in December and the club’s first cup since the Arsene Wenger era, their fourth FA Cup in seven years.
The Spaniard, who himself contracted coronavirus, has had to step in to negotiate a pay cut for his players during lockdown and then saw the team lose their first two games after the restart, said it was the proudest moment of his career.
Arsenal lifted the FA Cup for the 14th time after defeating Chelsea at Wembley Stadium
‘I think so. I’m really proud,’ he said. ‘It’s been so tough the last six months. I had only one mission when I came here, which was to make the staff and players believe that we could do it and have that energy and mentality. And seeing them in the dressing room altogether now makes me more proud and that we can win titles together.
‘It’s a good start. I knew the challenge I was facing the day I made a decision to come here. The history and legacy of this club is incredible. Here is the first one, let’s enjoy it and know there is a still long way to go.
‘When I walked through this incredible door I understood the needs of this club are so high. It’s a trophy for the fans to savour.’