‘He was treated badly’ – Arsenal escapee Aubameyang praised for avoiding ‘tragedy’ with transfer decision

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in action for Arsenal during 2019 friendly v Barcelona

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will have grown “sick and tired” at Arsenal, according to one pundit who has backed his decision to leave the club.

Aubameyang’s Arsenal career ended in acrimonious circumstances at the end of the winter transfer window. After being stripped of the club captaincy in December for a disciplinary breach, he left for Barcelona on February 2nd.

The timeline of events was perplexing for some club figures. But the eventual outcome was never really in doubt after that December decision – after which Aubameyang never played for Arsenal again.

And he wouldn’t have for the rest of this season if he had stayed, according to former Premier League striker Gabriel Agbonlahor. Therefore, he was well within his right to leave the club 18 months before the end of his contract.

In fact, the pundit believes Aubameyang was poorly treated in north London. What’s more, he has done something others might not have by challenging himself to leave in a deal that suits everyone.

“Arteta was never going to play him for the club again,” Agbonlahor told Football Insider.

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“It would have been a tragedy if he had stayed because Arsenal would have been paying him £350,000-a-week and he was never going to play.

“It works for the club and it works for Aubameyang. He’s probably sick and tired of training on his own and now he gets to go to the best club in the world, for me, and play under Xavi.

‘Give credit to Aubameyang’

Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang clapping

“There’s talk of him taking a pay cut to go there, maybe it went down to £200,000-a-week or £250,000-a-week.

“You’ve got to give credit to Aubameyang for going and having the hunger to play. Other players would have stayed at Arsenal for the next few months.

“He’s got a fresh start now. He’s at an iconic club. I’m happy for him to get that move.

“Players can get treated badly and this is a case where he was treated badly.”

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Departed striker hints at Arteta problem

As Agbonlahor alluded to, there are two sides to every story. While Aubameyang’s disciplinary issues were no secret, some may feel he was treated badly in return.

The Gabon international will have his own views on how his Arsenal adventure ended. And when speaking as a Barcelona player, he has hinted there was an issue with the manager.

“They were complicated months but I think that’s how football is sometimes,” the 32-year-old said.

“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 [Mikel] 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.”

Aubameyang ended his Arsenal career with 163 appearances and 92 goals. The only club he has represented more in his career was Borussia Dortmund.

Now, his commitments are with Barcelona. Arsenal will have to find a way to navigate until the end of the season before they can sign a new striker.

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