Mikel Arteta says he does not have a problem with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang — despite hauling him off against Manchester United.
But boss Arteta is adamant he is not trying to humiliate the struggling striker, who has not scored in his last five games.
He said: “I can guarantee you that there is not a rift with Auba.
“I have to respect the opinion of these people but I can tell you that I have the relationship I want with him.
“When I make decisions with 15, 20 minutes left or in the starting line-up, it is done with only one intention, to get the best out of the team.
“You are always concerned when your main striker isn’t scoring, but Auba is trying his hardest.
“He is aware of how much we need him as a team to score goals and at the moment they’re not coming.
“But the rest of the things we’re asking him to do, he is trying his best.”
Having lost their last two away games, Arteta knows it is vital Arsenal get back on track against Everton on Monday.
He added: “This league has become so competitive that the moment you lose a game or two, the pressure is coming.”