An Arsenal supporters’ group has expressed concern over job cuts at the club as the Gunners close in on a new deal for captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
The FA Cup winners announced last week there would be 55 redundancies, pointing to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on finances as the reason for the move. It is understood the job losses will come across football departments as well as commercial and administrative roles and some staff members have been given the news.
Further cuts not associated with the 55 redundancies have been made to Arsenal’s European scouting network, following on from the departures of head of international scouting Francis Cagigao, head of UK scouting Peter Clark and scout Brian McDermott.
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The news put the dampeners on the celebrations which followed Mikel Areta’s men winning a record 14th FA Cup with victory over Chelsea at Wembley, with Aubameyang scoring twice as the Gunners came from behind.
It is understood an agreement is in place with Aubameyang to extend his contract and could be announced in the coming days.
Chelsea winger Willian, meanwhile, continues to be heavily linked with a free transfer to the Emirates Stadium.
Despite positive news in terms of securing Aubameyang’s future and also strengthening the squad during the summer, the Arsenal Independent Supporters’ Association feels “creative solutions to difficult problems” should be found to avoid compulsory job losses. The planned redundancies appear set to go ahead despite most of the first-team players and also head coach Arteta having already accepted 12.5 per cent pay cuts earlier this year in a move to protect their colleagues.
“AISA is very concerned at Arsenal FC’s decision to make 55 posts redundant at the club,” a statement from the group’s committee read.
“We have been and remain supportive of the club in this very difficult time and note the efforts that have been taken – not least by the playing staff and senior management team – to make significant cost savings, but we would have hoped that redundancies could have been avoided.
“The Arsenal family needs to pull together in these unprecedented times and find creative solutions to difficult problems. This is what we expect from a club that is ‘always ahead of the game’.”
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