Recent reports have suggested that Chelsea striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang could be heading to the MLS and the trusted Fabrizio Romano shed light on whether that’ll be the case.
The Gabon international only joined the Blues in August, but he has recently fallen out of favour with Graham Potter after being left out of his 25-man Champions League squad.
With that in mind, Aubameyang has allegedly been looking for a way out. But, because he has already played for Barcelona and Chelsea this season, the only place he could potentially go to is the US.
When the former Arsenal man made the switch to Stamford Bridge, it was thought that he would become Chelsea’s main striker.
However, Aubameyang has played just 11 Premier League matches this season and was dropped from the squad for the Blues’ clash against Fulham on Friday.
As a result, the forward has been looking for a way out, with American side Los Angeles FC interested in bringing him in to replace the recently retired Gareth Bale, as reported by Football365.
FIFA say that players can only play for two teams in one season, but the MLS provides a convenient loophole for Aubameyang, as its 2023 campaign is considered ‘an overlapping season,’ due to begin this month.
They state: “Players may be registered with a maximum of three clubs during one season. During this period, the player is only eligible to play official matches for two clubs.”
“As an exception to this rule, a player moving between two clubs belonging to associations with overlapping seasons (i.e. start of the season in summer/autumn as opposed to winter/spring) may be eligible to play in official matches for a third club during the relevant season.”
Romano casts doubt on Aubameyang MLS links
However, despite the rumours, transfer guru Romano has suggested that the move is in doubt.
Writing for Caught Offside, he said: “MLS clubs are interested in Aubameyang but I’m told on the player’s side there’s no green light yet on this kind of solution, he prefers to continue in Europe as of now so nothing advanced at this stage.”
LAFC begin their 2023 season on February 25th, in ‘El Traffico’ against rivals LA Galaxy, so Aubamyang will need to make a decision on his future before then.
The striker’s only option to stay in Europe, however, would be to remain at Chelsea and fight for his place in Potter’s starting XI.
But that could be difficult, especially after club owner Todd Boehly splashed out around £300m on new signings in January.
Indeed, the billionaire brought in the likes of Enzo Fernandez (£107m), Mykhaylo Mudryk (£88.5m) and new striker David Datro Fofana (£10.6m), who was used as a substitute against Fulham.
The fact that Fofana was in the squad and Aubameyang was left out suggests Potter does not trust him to lead the line after scoring just one Premier League goal all season.
We know he can be a quality player on his day, so there’s a chance he could work his way back into Potter’s thinking. But at the moment, it looks unlikely he will head to the MLS, which is his only viable exit option.