FC Barcelona are reportedly in ‘desperate’ need to ‘balance the books’ so they are ‘willing’ to offload reported Chelsea target Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
This summer transfer window has been hectic to say the very least. Aubameyang to Chelsea is a move no one really considered until it started being talked about earlier this week.
On the face of it, this looks like a pretty random transfer. But it starts to make more sense when you remember that the forward was managed by Blues boss Thomas Tuchel at Borussia Dortmund.
Aubameyang’s time at Arsenal came to a premature end earlier this year. This came after a high-profile fallout with Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta.
The Gabon international was stripped of the captain’s armband before his contract was cancelled. This enabled him to join Barcelona on a free transfer.
Ex-Arsenal defender Bacary Sagna agreed with the club’s “strong decision” to get rid of Aubameyang:
“They took the decision to sell Aubameyang, which I thought was a strong decision, it was a strong statement from the club, no one is irreplaceable. The team and Arsenal had to come first,” Sagna said (via The Metro).
He added: “I was surprised by the events. I always expected him as a captain to be a leader.
“No one really knows what happened apart from those inside the club, because when things happen inside a dressing room it stays in the dressing room. I’ve heard things, I don’t know if they are true. It’s difficult for me to judge because I was not there.
“I know for a fact that Mikel [Arteta] is trying to keep the team together, trying to build a group and make the team come first no matter what. He always prioritises the group and the team, so it seems like that’s exactly what he did by selling Aubameyang.”
The 33-year-old fared well towards the end of last term, scoring 13 goals in 23 appearances for Barcelona.
His status at the club is unclear though as Barcelona have spent big to sign Robert Lewandowski this summer.
They have also signed Jules Kounde and Raphinha for big fees. At the same time, Frenkie de Jong is owed £17m in unpaid wages. Barcelona really are something else.
Given their troublesome financial situation, it comes as no surprise to hear that Barcelona are ‘desperate’ to ‘balance the books’, according to The Mirror.
In an attempt to do this, Barcelona are ‘willing to offload’ Aubameyang this summer. Xavi ‘does not want him to leave’ but he may not have a say on the matter.
A potential move to Chelsea is not imminent though as their hierarchy have not ‘pressed the green light on the deal’.
If he does move to Chelsea, what a story it will be. But they will hope that he does not turn out like Romelu Lukaku.