Arsenal have been tipped to keep club captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang until the end of his contract next year and let him leave as a free agent, if no club makes a suitable offer in excess of at least £20m in this summer’s transfer window.
Aubameyang will be out of contract at the end of the 2020/21 season and his future in north London has become increasingly uncertain over the last 12 months.
90min revealed in April that Arsenal could be prepared to sell Aubameyang as the Gunners have no plans to engage in further contract talks with the 30-year-old. They were originally willing to at least consider offers for their star striker as early as last summer.
Even before feeling the financial impact of coronavirus, the club warned about the problems of having a ‘Champions League wage bill’ that is supported by a ‘Europa League budget’. As such, 90min has been told that the Arsenal owners do not wish to sanction major outlays, which would include a new contract for Aubameyang that only offers short-term gain.
Arsenal lost out on a transfer fee for Aaron Ramsey last summer when the Welshman was able to run down his contract and join Juventus as a free agent. It might appear to be poor business sense to allow that to happen again but the Gunners may not have a lot of choice if there is a deflated market for Aubameyang and they are left needing to spend big to replace him.
The Sun claims that failing to command a ‘decent price’ for the Gabon international will see Arsenal keep hold of Aubameyang for the final year of his contract. The player will be 31 before the start of next season and a minimum of £20m is billed as a potential transfer value.
It is said that the club considers Aubameyang staying for one more season and ultimately leaving as a free agent to be more valuable to them than letting him go for a relatively small fee.
A source confirmed to 90min earlier this season that Aubameyang features on Barcelona’s list of targets as they weigh up forward options, although he is not their first choice.
90min also revealed that Chelsea and even Liverpool, who could spy a bargain for extra depth, are watching.
Source : 90min