The future of Pierre Emerick Aubameyang has been a topic of conversation in the media for a number of months already, but today, one report suggests the Arsenal forward is now potentially being lined up by Chelsea.
The Gabon international has little over a year remaining of his contract at the Emirates, and while Arsenal are keen to keep him at the club, talk of an extension has stalled, the former Dortmund forward believing to be keen on playing Champions League football once again.
Aubameyang has been linked with the likes of Barcelona and Inter Milan in recent months, while there were also tentative reports linking him to Manchester United, though according to ESPN, he could now be a target for Chelsea.
The Blues search for attacking reinforcements has been no secret, Frank Lampard having been left disappointed that the club were unable to strengthen in the January window, especially having seen their two-window transfer ban halved.
Lyon striker Moussa Dembele is thought to be one of Chelsea’s primary targets, while RB Leipzig’s Timo Werner has also been linked, though according to the ESPN report, Aubameyang is now becoming a ‘serious alternative’ to the pair.
They claim that there is ‘a growing possibility he could be made available for transfer’ this summer in a bid to avoid losing him for free, the Gunners having a somewhat strange history of seeing their club captain leave for nothing, especially to their Premier League rivals.
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has seen talks over a new deal further delayed, while it has also increased the financial pressures on a number of clubs, with Arsenal having already agreed a 12.5% pay cut with the majority of its staff and squad.
Whether the Gunners are willing to sell to a Premier League rival once again is yet to be seen of course, though for Chelsea, Aubameyang would likely represent the cheapest option among their targets given his age and contract status.
Arsenal and Chelsea do however have a history of doing business with each other, David Luiz recently joining the likes of Ashley Cole, William Gallas, Petr Cech and Olivier Giroud in moving between the London rivals.
During his time in English football, Aubameyang has been one of the most prolific strikers in the division, netting an impressive 49 goals in just 79 top-flight outings, winning last season’s golden boot.