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Report: Contract talks break down between Ramsey, Arsenal

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Aaron Ramsey‘s time at the Emirates Stadium may be coming to an end.

According to multiple reports in England, Arsenal has withdrawn a contract offer to Ramsey, after the Welsh international midfielder requested a contract similar to the one given to Mesut Ozil, which nets him around $23 million per season. Ramsey’s current contract ends in June 2019, meaning that he could leave Arsenal for a cut-rate fee this January or leave for nothing at the end of the current campaign.

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With more than 300 games in the red and white kit, Ramsey is Arsenal through and through, having joined 10 years ago as a teenager from Cardiff City. In that time, he’s had his ups and downs but when healthy, he’s gone on to become an absolute fixture in the side between Arsene Wenger and now Unai Emery‘s management. Ramsey was initially played as an attacking midfielder, a right-sided attacker and then eventually in his current role as a central midfielder or part of a double-pivot. In addition to shining at Arsenal, he’s earned more than 50 caps for Wales, leading his nation to the Euro 2016 semifinals.

Now, what does this mean for all involved? For Ramsey, after so long with one club, now may be his best shot at getting one last big contract within Europe’s upper echelon of leagues. At just 27-years old, Ramsey still can command a decent transfer fee and a good salary, though probably not the same that Ozil commands, thanks in part to Ozil’s starring roles in the past for the German National Team and Real Madrid. That being said, Ramsey could take his game to another level moving to Serie A or Spain, should he leave the Premier League.

On the other side, it may not be a massive loss for Arsenal too. Unai Emery clearly signed players such as Lucas Torreira and Matteo Guendouzi for a reason, and with Granit Xhaka possibly on his way out next summer as well, it could open up the chance for the two youngsters to move into the double-pivot role on a permanent basis. Torreira and Guendouzi will certainly learn a lot from Ramsey this season and while his departure would hurt, perhaps over time the Uruguayan or Frenchman can get to his level. Plus, Torreira especially is more adept defensively, something that Arsenal – and Ramsey – has notoriously struggled at for so long in massive games and derbies.

Ramsey will go down as one of Arsenal’s best midfielders in the club’s history, though never reaching the level of legends such as Patrick Vieira or Robert Pires from the “Invincibles” era.

PL Sunday preview: Chelsea look to extend perfect start; Arsenal vs. Everton

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Life in the Europa League spells a harsh reality for Chelsea and Arsenal this season: Thursday night games followed by the quick turnaround to Premier League action on Sunday.

[ MORE: What did we learn in the Premier League, Week 6? ]

West Ham United vs. Chelsea — 8:30 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com

Following wins by Liverpool and Manchester City on Saturday, Chelsea enter Sunday’s clash on the other side London, where they’ll take on a West Ham side that only last week picked up its first points of the season, third in the PL table. The Blues are, however — along with the Reds — one of two remaining unbeaten teams in the PL. Maurizio Sarri has stabilized Chelsea following a summer of tumult and turnover, thanks in large part to a series of dazzling performances by Eden Hazard — one of the figures at the center of the controversy this summer — as the Belgian has racked up five goals and a pair of assists in just over 300 minutes. His hat trick last weekend helped the Blues to a perfect 5-for-5 start to the season.

West Ham, on the other hand, finally have something to show for their efforts after appointing Manuel Pellegrini as manager and spending more than $100 million on transfers in the summer. All it took was one win to climb out of the bottom-three. Andriy Yarmolenko bagged a brace in the win over Everton, leaving Pellegrini more than pleased after showing faith in the Ukrainian during his first few weeks in the PL.

“I said at the start that Andriy needs a few weeks to get used to playing in the Premier League,” Pellegrini said this week. “He has a lot of quality, we know that, but in this league you can’t just play with quality.

“He demonstrated against Everton that it was the correct moment. He did it very well. After this performance, we must demand him to give more, because he’s able to be a top player for us.

INJURIES: West Ham — OUT: Manuel Lanzini (knee), Winston Reid (knee), Andy Carroll (ankle); QUESTIONABLE: Marko Arnautovic (knee) | Chelsea — QUESTIONABLE: Pedro (shoulder)

Arsenal vs. Everton — 11 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com

Another side enjoying a purple patch of results of late is Arsenal, winners of three straight after defeats to Manchester City and Chelsea to start the season. Unai Emery has worked out a decent enough formula, though the Gunners are yet to keep a clean sheet this season (their 9 goals conceded puts them in the bottom-half of the league in the goals-allowed column). Even star striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang acknowledged his side’s defensive struggles following Thursday’s 4-2 victory over Vorskla Poltava in the Europa League.

“I think we played well in the first half and at the beginning of the second as well and we scored four goals, but we need to improve and fight to not concede goals like we did in the last few minutes.”

Everton’s season has also been marked by a drastic difference between the first two games and the three which followed thereafter, only in reverse of Arsenal’s turnaround. After impressing in their first two games, the Toffees have collected just two points from the last three games. Their struggles have been, in part, down to the absence of Richarlison, who scored three goals in the first two games of the season before earning a red card and a three-game ban for head-butting Adam Smith during the 2-2 draw with Bournemouth. Injuries throughout the team proved costly against West Ham last weekend, and not much has improved on that front. Defensive pillars Michael Keane and Phil Jagielka remain out, while Seamus Coleman and Yerry Mina will undergo late fitness tests ahead of Sunday’s kickoff.

INJURIES: Arsenal — OUT: Sead Kolasinac (knee), Laurent Koscielny (achilles), Carl Jenkinson (ankle), Ainsley Maitland-Niles (knee); QUESTIONABLE: Henrikh Mkhitaryan (ankle), Lucas Torreira (knee)| Everton — OUT: Phil Jagielka (knee), Michael Keane (head), Andre Gomes (hamstring), James McCarthy (leg); QUESTIONABLE: Yerry Mina (foot) Seamus Coleman (foot)

Aubameyang, Arsenal cruise past Vorskla

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  • Aubameyang scores two
  • Mkhitaryan shines
  • Welbeck, Ozil also score

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored twice as Arsenal cruised to a 4-2 win over Vorskla Poltava in its first Europa League match of the season.

Danny Welbeck and Mesut Ozil also scored for the Gunners. Volodymyr Chesnakov scored a rocket goal late for Vorskla and Vyacheslav Sharpar scored in stoppage to give the Ukrainian visitors two nice bits of consolation.

Arsenal boss Unai Emery handed a Gunners debut to 18-year-old Emile Smith Rowe in the win.

[ MORE: Europa League standings ]

Henrikh Mkhitaryan sprung the break when a Vorskla player dummied a pass into his path. Racing 50 yards before springing Alex Iwobi, Mkhitaryan had a prime angle to watch Aubameyang meet the Nigerian’s cross and punch it into the goal from 15 yards. 1-0.

Lucas Torreira came close to swerving a free kick home in the 38th minute, but swept it into the outside of the netting. And Aubameyang just missed a terrific second goal with a curling effort off the post just before half.

[ MORE: Europa League schedule ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Mkhitaryan and Torreira were both wonderful for the Gunners, and the former cued up Welbeck’s second goal with a pinpoint cross to the top of the six for a headed finish.

Aubameyang struck for his second in the 55th minute, an effortless curler from outside the 18.

Mesut Ozil came off the bench to poke home Arsenal’s fourth after build-up from Stephane Lichtsteiner and Matteo Guendouzi, though Vorskla’s goal may be the highlight of the second frame.

Lacazette speaks after star turn; Watch his, Auba’s beauties

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Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette scored gorgeous goals, living up the stardust potential of their partnership atop Arsenal’s strike force.

Aubameyang smashed Arsenal into a second half lead with a fantastic goal at Cardiff City Stadium, and Lacazette set it up.

[ RECAP: Cardiff 2-3 Arsenal ]

The Gunners had been frustrated by Cardiff’s shot blocking and tight zone for much of the early second half, and were locked at 1 with the Bluebirds.

But Lacazette’s gorgeous back heel flick of Mesut Ozil’s pass was smashed home by Aubameyang.

Following a Cardiff equalizer, it was Lacazette’s time to shine.

Played in by substitute Lucas Torreira, the Frenchman turned nicely before smashing a high shot beyond the hopes of Cardiff goalkeeper Neil Etheridge.

Aaron Ramsey returned to Wales in the win, the former Cardiff City youth excited to be home but focused on keeping Arsenal on the up.

“We wanted to take full advantage against the opposition today. We had a difficult start losing to Manchester City and Chelsea but we have bounced back. We know going to be difficult here, the crowd is superb, so if you give them any chance you can really feel the atmosphere, so we did well to overcome this.”

Cardiff scoring twice — they had yet to find the net this season — a real question for Emery’s defense, but the attack was electric. The two elite strikers up top may be his answer.

Beauties from Lacazette, Aubameyang lead Arsenal to win

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  • Mustafi, Aubameyang score
  • Cardiff equalizes twice
  • Lacazette the difference late

Alexandre Lacazette had a goal and an assist as Arsenal was too much for stubborn Cardiff City in a 3-2 win at Cardiff City Stadium on Sunday.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Shkrodan Mustafi also scored for the Gunners, who held three one-goal leads in winning their second successive match under Unai Emery.

Victor Camarasa and Danny Ward scored equalizers with Cardiff City’s only efforts on target, as Cardiff remains on two points.

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Petr Cech passed the ball to Cardiff’s Harry Arter just outside the 18, but Arter slipped in cutting to make the interception and Cech was able to cover the frame before Arter zipped a shot over the goal.

Shkrodan Mustafi’s sliding effort missed high at the other end moments later before making good on his threat in the 11th minute. Mustafi shook Sol Bamba on a corner kick and pounded a header home.

Alexandre Lacazette zinged an effort off the far post in the 33rd minute, the Gunners in clear control of the match aside from a nervy moment or two via Cardiff counter.

That changed in the final few minutes of the half, as the Bluebirds burst through the door to get their first goal of the season (the final team of the 92 English clubs to do so).

Camarasa missed badly on a volley effort, but he quickly found the loose ball and belted it past Cech. 1-1 in first half stoppage time? Cardiff boss Neil Warnock would’ve signed up for that.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

The Gunners were frustrated by Cardiff’s shot blocking and tight zone for much of the early second half, but Alexandre Lacazette’s gorgeous back heel flick of Mesut Ozil’s pass was smashed home by Aubameyang.

Cardiff improved after conceding, with a pair of corners and an Arter-won free kick yielding hope for the home support. The latter paid off, with Ward heading off the post and into the goal.

Lacazette’s swaggering celebration came in the 81st minute after he turned Lucas Torreira‘s pass into space and shot an arrow near post and into the upper 90.

Neil Etheridge made a pair of saves on Lacazette and Ramsey in stoppage time.