Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has pointed the blame for his “complicated” departure from Arsenal at Mikel Arteta, as the Gabon international was unveiled by Barcelona.
Having been frozen out at Emirates Stadium since early December, the striker finally got the move he craved when the Liga giants signed him on January transfer deadline day.
A breach of club discipline had been responsible for his absence in north London, but Aubameyang claims Gunners boss Arteta was the only one that had a problem with him and ultimately left him with no choice but to leave.
What has been said?
At his official unveiling, Aubameyang said: “They were complicated months but I think that's how football is sometimes.
“For my part I have never wanted to do something wrong and now I think that this is the past and I want to think about the present and right now that is my answer.
“I think the problem was only with Arteta and he made the decision. I can't say much, I wasn't happy and that's it. It happened like that. I wasn't very happy, I stayed very calm and that's it.”
The bigger picture
Aubameyang had signed with Arsenal in January 2018, with Arsene Wenger luring him away from Borussia Dortmund.
He settled quickly in English football and claimed a share of the Premier League Golden Boot during his first full season, with 22 top-flight goals in 2018-19. In total he scored 92 times for the Gunners across 163 appearances.
Aubameyang was handed the captain’s armband in November 2019, but was stripped of those responsibilities in December 2021 and the opportunity to join Barca proved too good to turn down after already snubbing advances from Saudi Arabia.
Aubameyang is now looking to hit the ground running in Spain, with the Liga heavyweights revealing their latest addition will wear the No 25 shirt.