Arsenal forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is reportedly a subject of serious interest from clubs in the cash-rich Chinese Super League.
According to a report from The Times, Arsenal superstar and Premier League’s joint top-scorer for the 2018-19 season, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has emerged as a transfer target for a number of clubs from the Chinese Super League.
Aubameyang joined Arsenal from Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund in January 2018 in a £56 million deal and has been a success in his short time at the Emirates Stadium. Having netted 10 goals in 14 matches in the second half of the 2017-18 term, the Gabon striker took his game to a new level in the recently concluded season.
Aubameyang finished the 2018-19 campaign with 31 goals from 51 matches in all competitions – 22 of these came in the Premier League – leading to him finishing as the leading scorer in the competition along with Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane. However, he was unable to help Arsenal finish in the top four.
The 29-year-old also netted 8 times in the UEFA Europa League, including a hat-trick against Valencia in the semi-final, but failed to guide Arsenal to a trophy success, as they were hammered 4-1 by Chelsea in the final.
With Arsenal set to miss out on Champions League football for a third consecutive season, the club find themselves in a difficult situation financially. The Gunners will be operating on a tight budget in the transfer window and will need to cut costs from player sales. Their situation has put clubs in the Chinese Super League on alert, as they look to pry Aubameyang away from their clutches.
This is not the first time Aubameyang has been linked with a switch to the cash-rich CSL. The 29-year-old came close to sealing a £71 million move to Tianjin Quanjian in the summer of 2017 only for the move to fall through, while he was also a subject of a £62 million bid from Guangzhou Evergrande weeks before he joined Arsenal.
And now, as per the report, the Gabonese striker has been offered a contract worth £300,000-a-week by both Guangzhou and Shanghai SIPG, in order to convince him to move to the Chinese Super League in the summer.
This puts Arsenal in a difficult position. Aubameyang has been an extremely important player for the Gunners since arriving at the club eighteen months ago. But, given their financial constraints, they could be tempted to cash in on the player, who will be turning 30 in a couple of weeks, should a huge offer come along.
Aubameyang has two years left on his £190,000-a-week contract with Arsenal. The striker has struck up a great partnership with Alexandre Lacazette, who himself has been linked with Barcelona, and seems to be enjoying life in the Premier League. However, he has flirted with a switch to China before and a bumper wage rise could get him thinking about a summer transfer.