Eddie Nketiah has opened up on his relationship with Arsenal duo Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.
The 21-year-old is in direct competition with the pair as he looks to cement a place in manager Mikel Arteta’s strongest XI.
So far this season, Nketiah has had to settle for a back-up role when it comes to Premier League games as he’s started just once from Arsenal’s opening eight games.
But despite Arteta’s preference for Aubameyang and Lacazette in attack, Nketiah insists he has a positive relationship with the pair and often goes to them for advice.
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“I’ve got a very good relationship with both of them,” Nketiah told The Athletic. “They’re top players whose records speak for themselves. Off the pitch, they’re great guys.
“As a young player, to compete with them, to push each other, is brilliant. I watch how they finish in a certain way, ask them how got into a certain position or what they were thinking when they got there.
“Training with them just raises your level. I’m so grateful to have them.”
Whilst Nketiah is grateful for the opportunity to learn from Aubameyang and Lacazette, he has no problem with taking one of their places in the starting lineup.
“You can’t, to be fair. That’s the aim, isn’t it?” It is a dog-eat-dog world,” he responds when asked if the idea makes him feel guilty. “Yeah, definitely.”
With that said, it would appear that Nketiah not only has his eyes on becoming Arsenal’s main striker, but also on taking his shirt number of one of his aforementioned rivals in the future.
The England U21 currently wears no.30, but has hinted at no.9 – currently worn by Lacazette – is his favoured option, although he does have a soft spot for no.14 – Aubameyang’s number – in honour of Gunners legend Thierry Henry.
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