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Aubameyang joins Barcelona

Aubameyang Leaves Arsenal, Signs For Barcelona

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has left Arsenal after four years at the club and has joined Barcelona on a free transfer.

With 18 months left of his contract with Arsenal worth £350,000 a week, Aubameyang signed a contract with Barcelona till June 30th, 2025, with an option to agree departure on June 30, 2023.

The deal for the 32-year-old Gabon striker included a 100 million euros ($113 million) buyout clause.

A potential loan deal was first offered, but the Barcelona was unable to match Aubameyang’s £340,000-per-week salary and so Arsenal subsequently agreed to let him go as a free agent and signed for the La Liga giants on a permanent deal.

Arsenal is estimated to be making a saving of around £25m in wages with Aubameyang’s departure. The Premier League club was willing to allow Aubameyang leave after stripping him of the captaincy in December following a disciplinary issue.

It was reported that Aubameyang arrived late to a team meeting and as a disciplinary measure was tripped of his captaincy and dropped for a north London derby last season.

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Aubameyang initially joined Arsenal from Borussia Dortmund for a club-record fee of £56 million ($76m) in January 2018 and went on to score 92 goals in 163 games for the north London club. The player left the club by a mutual consent but said “it hurts” to leave Arsenal “without a real goodbye”.

He has shared a goodbye message on his social media account saying, “To the Arsenal fans, thank you for making London home for myself and my family for the past four years. We went through ups and downs together and your support meant everything to me.

“Having the chance to win trophies and the honour of being the captain of this club is something I will forever keep in my heart. I have always been 100 percent focused and committed on doing everything I can for this club which is why leaving without a real goodbye hurts – but that is football.

“I’m sad I did not get the chance to help my teammates in the last few weeks, but I have nothing but respect for this club and truly wish all my guys and the fans all the best and many successful years in the future! Love, Auba.”

Arsenal had commented on Aubameyang’s exit, “wish Auba all the best for the next chapter in his career and thanking him for his contribution to the club.”

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In his new chapter with Barcelona, the club had tweeted, “It’s Auba time!” including a video of Aubameyang declaring “I’m here Barcelona fans! Forza Barca!”

The club’s president, Joan Laporta had said in a press conference that the club hoped to unveil the Gabon captain this week, along with fellow new signing Adama Traore, who re-joined the club from Wolves.

Despite Barca’s enormous debts which amount to more than a billion euros, the club hopes the signing of these players would help to regain her footing and prestige in La Liga even as they sit fifth in table rankings under coach Xavi.

Aubameyang was part of the Gabon squad at the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon but missed the first two games due to coronavirus before being sent home after team medical staff said they had detected “cardiac lesions”.