After making 163 appearances and scoring 92 goals in all competitions for Arsenal, Aubameyang finally left Arsenal in search of a new challenge. The Gabonese striker was a target for a couple of teams during the 2022 January transfer window, (including the Saudi Arabian club Al Nassr) but he decided to stay in Europe and join Barcelona.
Aubameyang was on a £350K a week salary contract at Arsenal and so many were asking why did he leave the club if he was making that much money, with 6 more months left till the end of his contract?
Here are some of the reasons why Aubameyang left Arsenal to join Barcelona:
Poor Run of Form
Since the start of the 2021/22 season, Aubameyang made only 14 appearances in the Premier League for Arsenal. He scored only 4 goals.
By his standards, these numbers were not great, as he found himself in a very bad form. He was clearly unhappy with the amount of playing time he was getting under Arteta.
The problems with discipline were also rather typical for the 32-year-old striker. The first example of that is during a training session with his national team Gabon. Actually, he was accused of training while being drunk. Aubameyang is known for his love of the party life, so it’s not impossible that this could have happened multiple times during his time with the Gunners.
Arsenal fans will also not forget when he missed not just a regular game, but the north London derby due to being late for a pre-match meeting with the team. The former Arsenal captain has even been stripped of his captaincy, because of his disciplinary breach.
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Lack of European Club Competition Matches
In the 2020/21 season, Arsenal finished 8th in the Premier League table. This meant that the north London club will not be taking part in any European competition for the next season.
Every football player dreams of these kinds of games. And as for a proven striker like Aubameyang, not playing Champions League games is a big issue.
The Gabonese striker will now have another chance to lift the Europa League trophy and play Champions League football with Barcelona after he failed to do so with Arsenal.
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Aubameyang’s Relationship With Mikel Arteta
The Arsenal head coach, Mikel Arteta, was clearly not happy with the performance of Aubameyang during the striker’s last season at the club.
As mentioned above, Arteta stripped him of his captain role at the club, because of his poor attitude. However, even before that, when Aubameyang was a regular starter for Arsenal, he looked lazy on the pitch and appeared demotivated, (judging by his body language) despite being on a high salary.
It’s very possible that Aubameyang didn’t like Arteta’s style of play and maybe wasn’t seeing any improvements within the team with him as a head coach.
Aubameyang’s Dream of Playing in Spain
The Gabon international has mentioned multiple times that his dream is to play for Real Madrid.
It’s said that Auba even promised his grandfather that one day he will play for Los Blancos. So, it’s a bit surprising to see him join their biggest rivals, Barca.
But an official approach was never made by Real to sign Aubameyang, so probably his best choice was to play for the other big Spanish team (Barca).
The weather is another thing to consider here because the Gabonese striker definitely enjoys playing in nice, warm, Spanish temperatures.
Final Thoughts on Why Aubameyang Left Arsenal
After all, these are the main reasons as to why Aubameyang left Arsenal and chose to play for Barcelona.
But even after he left, in not the best of ways for both the club and the player. The striker will surely be remembered as being the top goalscorer during one of Arsenal’s tough periods as a club.
Auba helped Arsenal to win the FA Cup and the Community shield in 2019/20 and the start of 2020/21 campaigns.
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