Borussia Dortmund are outraged by Arsene Wenger's public comments surrounding the reported transfer of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to Arsenal, with the German club's sporting director Michael Zorc encouraging the Gunners boss to focus on the performances of his own players rather than speculate over the future of the striker.
The Gunners are desperately moving to cover the impending departure of star attacker Alexis Sanchez, who is set to make a move to Manchester United, and 28-year-old Aubameyang has handed in a transfer request which has led to those at the Emirates growing increasingly confident that a deal could be struck.
Der #BVB ist not amused: „Wir empfinden es als respektlos, sich über Spieler anderer Vereine zu äußern. Es gibt keinen Kontakt zu #Arsenal. Wir gehen davon aus, dass Arsene #Wenger genug damit zu tun hat, sich um die Leistung seiner eigenen Spieler zu kümmern.“ #aubameyang
When asked if Arsenal were moving closer to securing a deal for the Gabon international and if his character profile would fit into his side at the Emirates, Wenger said, via the Metro: ‘We are, with this kind of thing, better when it is secret and announce when it’s over the line.
"Yes, because character can be very positive and very negative. Overall you look at the achievement of a player over their career and usually his character has been used in a positive way."
The comments quickly reached the hierarchy of Dortmund and they were not best pleased, Zorc said: "We find it disrespectful to speak about players of other clubs. There is no contact with Arsenal.
"We assumed that Arsene Wenger has enough on his mind to take care of the performances of his own players."
The damning statement does nothing to clear up the future of Aubameyang, but Dortmund manager Peter Stoger insisted he will continue to see the 28-year-old as part of his plans until he is told otherwise.
Stoger said: "[Aubameyang] wasn’t an issue for us these last few days. We had a good, short talk on Monday. If nothing changes he’s an option for tomorrow [against Hertha Berlin].
"I told Aubameyang what I want to see from him, that he gives it all in training. At the end it’s up to him to qualify for the team and do what’s necessary to be a part of it. Until I hear there’s a personnel change he’s part of my plans.
"I feel like the guys are happy if Aubameyang’s here and works hard because he’s obviously got a lot of quality. It’s a lot more calm within these walls than it might appear to some on the outside."