Mikel Arteta says the club aren’t in contract negotiations with Alexandre Lacazette, as they’re focusing on their business in the transfer market.

Arsenal's French striker Alexandre Lacazette (L) celebrates scoring the opening goal with Arsenal's Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang who provided the assist during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and West Ham United at the Emirates Stadium in London on September 19, 2020. (Photo by Ian Walton / POOL / AFP)
Arsenal striker Alexandre Lacazette (L) celebrates scoring with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on September 19, 2020. (Photo by Ian Walton / POOL / AFP)

Speaking after the West Ham match on Saturday, Mikel Arteta confirmed Arsenal aren’t yet in contract talks with Alexandre Lacazette.

Lacazette scored his second goal of the season on the day, helping Arsenal to a 2-1 win. But with two years left on his contract, his future is still uncertain in the latter stages of the transfer window.

“At the moment, we haven’t started any negotiations,” Arteta said. “We have a lot of things still to do in this market and at the moment we are focusing on those things.

“[Lacazette is] a player I’m really happy with. I think we’ve shown him a lot of faith since I arrived here. But we cannot stop any speculation.”

Obviously, Arsenal did hand Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang a contract extension earlier this week. But you could argue that was a much higher priority situation than Lacazette’s.

Aubameyang was in the final year of his deal as the club captain. He was drawing interest from the likes of Barcelona and scored 29 goals last season, including the winner in the FA Cup final. With all due respect, none of those things are true of Lacazette.

Arteta will still want some security with the striker. Whether that’s selling and replacing him, signing him up to an extension or agreeing that he’ll stay one more year without a new deal, we don’t know yet.

It’s just not the focus right now, with so much else going on. I think that’s fair enough.