Arsenal: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang admits he gave up his £350,000-a-week salary to join…
Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang has admitted he gave up his £350,000-a-week salary at Arsenal in order to join Barcelona
The 32-year-old had been banished by Mikel Arteta and stripped of the captaincy after returning late from a personal trip abroad in December.
A month later, he left Arsenal by mutual consent before joining Barcelona in a dramatic deadline day move at the end of the January transfer window.
Speaking to Mundo Deportivo, the striker revealed that it was his 'dream' to join Barcelona, and knew the deal might happen a week before it went through.
He said: 'My father did it all with my lawyer and they can say it best.
'But the week before we already knew that he could end up signing for Barca. The week before there were already contacts and I knew it.
He added: 'I really wanted to go to Barca. I gave up my salary because it is an opportunity that you have once in your life.
'It was something incredible (his ovation at the Nou Camp). It is a dream to play on a field like this and receive this ovation. I was very pleased and happy. The truth is that it was incredible.'
Barcelona had been interested in signing the Gabon striker back in 2020 but were unable to pull off the move.
His future at Arsenal though looked over after he was dropped due to a 'disciplinary breach' after returning home late from a visit to France to visit his mother in December.
Aubameyang Arsenal's £350,000-per-week contract was due to expire next summer, with the remaining time worth around £27million.
He revealed that he spoke to a number of present and former Barcelona players including Arsenal legend Thierry Henry, Hector Bellerin and Ousmane Dembele about the Catalan club.
The striker arrived in Spain on deadline day though there was initially confusion after there had been no agreement between the clubs.
The ace has family based in the region, but landed to the surprise of all parties. However, his arrival left him well-placed to have his medical later in the day.
Aubameyang eventually completed his 'dream' move and has made a promising start to to life at the Catalan giants, scoring a hat-trick at the weekend in their 4-1 victory over Valencia.
In doing so he became the first player to score a hat-trick in the Premier League, LaLiga, Bundesliga and Ligue 1.
The striker also revealed in the interview that he and Arsenal boss Arteta buried the hatchet before his departure from the Emirates.
He confirmed that the Spaniard personally wished him good luck after the Gabon striker signed for Barcelona.
Aubameyang joins Barcelona at a time where they are trying to recover from recent financial turmoil.
The club are fourth in LaLiga and were knocked out of the Champions League group stage.
At Arsenal he won the FA Cup and Community Shield and he has high hopes of adding major trophies to his cabinet during his time at Barcelona.
When asked what he would most like to achieve he responded: 'Winning the league and Champions League.'
He also has his sights set on winning the Europa League this season, especially after losing in the final with Arsenal to Chelsea back in 2019.
In the Europa League play-offs, Barcelona drew their first leg 1-1 with Napoli at the Nou Camp.
He said: 'We are going to give everything and, personally, I am going to continue working as I have done since I arrived.
'I want to win games and I want to win this Europa League. It's been a thorn in my side since 2019. We must win in Naples.'
Despite a sour ending to his time at Arsenal, he was a huge hit for the majority of his four years in London, scoring 92 goals in 163 games.