A head-scratching Chelsea signing made in Todd Boehly’s first window at the helm will leave this summer, and Fabrizio Romano has revealed how a move to a true European giant can take shape.
Among the most curious signings made by Chelsea under their new regime was that of former Arsenal forward, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
The 33-year-old was plucked from Barcelona for £10.3m in the very late stages of the summer window. Chelsea’s need for a reliable centre-forward was clear and Aubameyang was understood to have been signed at the behest of then-manager Thomas Tuchel.
Tuchel got the best out of Aubameyang during their Borussia Dortmund days, though any hopes there’d be a second purple patch were dashed mere days later.
Indeed, Todd Boehly and his Clearlake partners sacked Tuchel less than one week after Aubameyang was signed.
Aubameyang then proceeded to barely get a look-in under subsequent managers Graham Potter and Frank Lampard. An off-field incident in mid-March was further proof Aubameyang and Chelsea just weren’t meant to be.
The striker was spotted in the dressing room of former club Barcelona following their 2-1 victory over Real Madrid on Sunday March 19. Goal reported the player’s trip to Barcelona was ‘frowned upon’ by the Chelsea hierarchy.
With a Chelsea firesale needed to balance the books at season’s end, Aubameyang has long been speculated to be front and centre among the exits.
Now, according to transfer guru Fabrizio Romano, an Aubameyang exit is guaranteed.
Aubameyang a one and done at Chelsea; Barcelona return wanted
The trusted reporter tweeted Aubameyang will “100 percent leave Chelsea” this summer. On the subject of where he’ll go, Aubameyang has already made his preference known.
The veteran frontman is quoted by Romano as saying on TikTok: “I’d like to return to Barcelona… but we will see.”
Aubameyang performed well during his six-month stint at the Camp Nou. He notched 13 goals in 24 matches across all competitions for Xavi’s side and is understood to have been a popular member of the dressing room.
Barcelona found it difficult to refuse the chance to make a quick buck when Chelsea came calling. However, a return to Spain could occur.
Romano added Barcelona are “open” to bringing Aubameyang back, though a move hinges entirely on conforming to Financial Fair Play regulations.
To do so, Barca must sign Aubameyang without having to pay a transfer fee. That would require Chelsea allowing a player who still has another season on his contract to leave for free.
Furthermore, Aubameyang would need to accept a reduction in salary before a move to Barcelona can be ratified.
But with Chelsea seeking to get rid and Barcelona and Aubameyang both keen on a move, the raw materials for an agreement are all there.