Arsenal are plotting moves to tie star duo Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette to long-term contracts at the Emirates Stadium, after an impressive season from the forwards.
The striking duo have formed a formidable partnership this season which has fired the Gunners to the Europa League final. The pair scored all seven of their side's goals between them over the two legs of their semi-final clash with Valencia.
Aubameyang's hat-trick at the Mestalla sealed Arsenal's passage to Baku in the second leg, and the Gabon international now has 27 goals and seven assists in all competitions to his name this season, whilst Lacazette has chipped in with 18 goals and 11 assists.
With Aubameyang's contract only having two years remaining and Lacazette's current deal set to expire a year later, the Daily Mail reports that the Gunners are planning to hold talks with the star duo over extensions in the summer.
It is suggested that Unai Emery's side are keen to avoid any further continuation of an unwanted trend which has seen the club lose a number of star players in recent years, either for reduced fees or for nothing.
Robin van Persie ran his contract down to the final year in 2012 and Arsenal were forced to sell their star man to Manchester United for just £22.5m, rather than lose the Dutchman for free a year later, in what was the start of an ongoing issue for the club.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was also sold to Liverpool under the same circumstances two years ago, with just 12 months remaining on his contract at the time, as Arsenal received £35m for the midfielder.
Alexis Sanchez also completed a move to Manchester United in January 2017 with just six months left on his deal at the Emirates at the time, and the problematic pattern has continued this season with Aaron Ramsey.
The Welshman has sealed a deal which will see him move to Juventus on a free transfer when his Arsenal contract expires at the end of the season, and the Gunners are apparently desperate to prevent any further such departures for star names.
That issue is seemingly no more urgent than in the cases of top scorer Aubameyang and this season's club player of the year Lacazette, given the pair's huge importance for Unai Emery's team this term.
Aubameyang's current contract is worth £190,000-a-week, having signed for a club-record £56m from Borussia Dortmund in January 2017, and the Gunners are apparently willing to offer their leading scorer improved terms of £250,000-per-week.
Lacazette has established himself as a firm favourite at the Emirates this term, and his increased importance has seen him named the club's player of the season. The Frenchman is set to be offered a similar wage packet to that of his strike partner.
If true, the news could come as a blow to Barcelona who had reportedly put Lacazette on their summer shortlist as they seek a partner and long-term successor for Luis Suarez.
Source : 90min