Gary Neville says Arsenal made a 'mistake from day one' with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang with his initial contract at the club.

Aubameyang's future is up in the air as he has just a year remaining on his current deal at The Emirates.

Arsenal now fear losing their star striker for nothing next summer and could cut their losses by selling Aubameyang at the end of the season.

A similar situation unravelled with Aaron Ramsey last season, and Neville feels Arsenal set themselves up for a fall when they signed Aubameyang in the first place on a three-year contract.

"It feels to me that if you pay £60million for someone, to have him sort of leaving or in a position where he can leave, I think Arsenal find themselves in this position far too often," Neville told Sky Sports.

Neville says Arsenal should have signed Aubameyang to a longer-term deal
Neville says Arsenal should have signed Aubameyang to a longer-term deal

"I think a three-year deal for someone who cost £60m you'd at least want that fourth year so you can control him and if he does well in those first two years, which he has.

"So that's the mistake they've made with Aubameyang on day one, the fact that they're in this position now is through mistakes they've made previously.

"I think Arsenal are in a position where the player is going to call the shots. Yes they could keep him for another year but then he leaves for nothing."

Aubameyang is back in training but could leave Arsenal this summer
Aubameyang is back in training but could leave Arsenal this summer

Aubameyang has continued to stall over a new deal with Arsenal as he weighs up his future.

The forward turns 31 this month and still has ambitions to play in the Champions League and win trophies.

He has been linked with a cut-price move to one of Europe's big guns this summer, with Barcelona and Real Madrid among the clubs interested.

But Jamie Carragher feels Arsenal would be better off holding onto the player, even if he moves on for nothing next year.

He said: "Yes it's ok having rules in place at Arsenal and saying 'we never let e player go on a Bosman ruling'. But if you're Mikel Arteta, I would be looking at it thinking even if he goes for nothing next year, have we got more chance of getting in the Champions League if Aubameyang stays? That's the decision they've got to make.

"At this stage there's no doubt about it, Aubameyang is too good for Arsenal. We had it at Liverpool at times with Luis Suarez, and you're desperate to keep hold of them, because you are thinking as a club we want to build around this player and if he goes you almost feel like you're starting again.

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"It's ok saying 'well if he doesn't want to be there, let him go.' I hear all this, but it's not easy when you're at that club and you have a player of that star quality.

"If you're asking me in that position, it's not easy to find goalscorers, I'd keep Aubameyang and look if you could bring players in around that and hopefully have a successful season and maybe in the next 12 months convince him to stay, but if not I think it gives Arsenal a greater chance of getting back into the top four."

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