Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: Barcelona in advanced talks to sign Arsenal striker on loan | Soccer News
Barcelona are in advanced talks with Arsenal over the loan signing of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
The two clubs are yet to agree the deal but there is growing confidence that it can be done before the transfer window closes on Monday night.
The deal would see Aubameyang move to the Nou Camp until the end of the season.
Barcelona reportedly don’t have the option of making Aubameyang’s switch permanent, and talks continue over how much of the striker’s salary they would cover.
Juventus also wanted to sign Aubameyang but their decision depended on Atletico Madrid agreeing to cut short Alvaro Morata’s loan spell. As things stand, Morata will stay at Juventus.
Arsenal are ready to allow Aubameyang to leave after stripping him as captain in December following a disciplinary issue.
The 32-year-old hasn’t played for the club since December 6 and was left out of their squad for their hot-weather training camp in Dubai this week.
Sky Sports News reported earlier in the window that the 32-year-old would prefer a move to a big European club if a deal could be agreed.
Marseille, Sevilla, Paris Saint-Germain and AC Milan have all expressed interest, while Saudi clubs Al Nassr and Al Hilal have made loan offers with an obligation to buy.
Analysis: Aubameyang had lost his way
Sky Sports’ Adam Bate:
The drop in performance levels has been so significant that it’s probably worth reminding people that Aubameyang has been a world-class striker for much of his time at Arsenal.
Indeed, from the day of his debut for the club in February 2018 until the day of his double against Everton in February 2020, no player has scored more goals in the Premier League. He has scored 49 times in that span, the same as Mohamed Salah and a dozen more than Harry Kane.
There was a notable highlight after that when he scored twice in Arsenal’s FA Cup final win over Chelsea in the summer of 2020. But almost as soon as his new contract was signed in September, there was a feeling of decline, of a player whose best days are behind him.
Deprived of the captaincy, too often the leadership had to come from elsewhere. It’s the young players who drive Arsenal under Mikel Arteta, not their highest-paid player. It is a situation that the club knows well having experienced the same thing with Mesut Ozil. This cannot last.
At 32, there will be hope that Aubameyang can return to his best form yet, inspired by a new environment and the challenge of restoring Barcelona to their former glories. At Arsenal, any regret will be tempered by the feeling that it is time for the club to move on.
Did Aubameyang play his last game for Arsenal?
Sky Sports News’ Dharmesh Sheth:
“The deal is not done with Barcelona, but there is growing confidence that it can be done.
“It’s a straight loan until the end of the season. Discussions are ongoing over what percentage of his salary Barcelona will pay – we believe he is on £350,000 a week.
“Arsenal will be looking for the majority of this payment to be made by Barcelona.
“These developments with Aubameyang explain why, as things stand, Eddie Nketiah remains at Arsenal. And this despite Crystal Palace making two offers during this transfer window.”
Merson: ‘Arsenal need a striker’
Paul Merson told Sky Sports:
“If Alexandre Lacazette misses the open goal opportunity against Burnley, the job is done and no one complains at all.
“Everyone would talk about how good a result would have been for Arsenal with a clean sheet too. It’s 1-0 for Arsenal and everything is fine. But he misses an open goal and all of a sudden they only scored one goal in January, which came in their best performance by a mile.
“That’s Arsenal’s problem. You’re not going to win too much without a centre-forward.
“I know people will say Manchester City do it, but they still have to win the Champions League playing with a false nine. They also have superstars all over the pitch and are probably the only team in the world that can do that. .
“So Arsenal need a centre-forward.”
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