Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has admitted that the January signing of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang may have had a negative effect on Alexandre Lacazette, with the latter 's confidence seemingly knocked by the club record arrival.
Lacazette, who was Arsenal's previous record buy after completing a summer move Lyon, was guilty of missing two late chances that would have at least rescued a point from Saturday's North London Derby defeat against Tottenham at Wembley.
The French international was left on the bench when Aubameyang made his debut against Everton, and had to make do with a substitute role against Spurs.
"He is a good goalscorer. He has gone through difficult periods before. It can happen - it is a fraction of a second," Wenger is quoted as saying by the Daily Telegraph in response to Lacazette's misses and his loss of form.
"Maybe the confidence is not high because he has seen a competitor coming in for him."
Aubameyang played the full 90 minutes, failing to add to his debut goal against Everton.
Lacazette will have an early chance to redeem himself when the Gunners face Swedish side Ostersunds FK in the Europa League Last 32 this week.
The 26-year-old was rested for all six group games in the competition earlier this season, but with Alexis Sanchez and Olivier Giroud leaving in January and Aubameyang not eligible to play because former club Dortmund have dropped into the Europa League from the Champions League, Lacazette will be needed in Europe for the rest of the season.