Real Madrid are considering offering Arsenal a player-swap deal for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as the battle for the Gunners’ captain hots up.
The Spanish giants have not been able to get a player to carry the goal scoring burden of the team since Cristiano Ronaldo left for Juventus.
Barcelona and Manchester United are also battling for the striker’s signature.
Real Madrid are hoping offering one player as part of the deal will put them ahead of others.
Arsenal seem to favour offloading the striker to Real Madrid as Spanish outlet Diario Madridista reports that the Gunners have made contact with the La Liga giants to offer up their striker.
Aubameyang will enter the final 12 months of his contract this summer and the Gunners would rather cash in now rather than let him walk for free next year.
It is thought the Gabon international will be allowed to leave for around £50million.
But Real have a plan to try and get a substantial chunk of the fee knocked off by offering Dani Ceballos as part of the deal.
The 23-year-old midfielder has only made 10 Premier League appearance after joining Arsenal on loan at the start of the season.
However, new boss Mikel Arteta may believe the former Real Betis ace could be one for the future.
So Real will apparently allow Arsenal to keep the youngster on a permanent basis as part of the Aubameyang negotiations.
Meanwhile, former Gunners star Paul Merson fears the club may not be able to offer the 30-year-old a suitable contract extension.
“It would be a major disaster for Arsenal if they lost Aubameyang, however, the decision will be weighed up and at least it will be the club’s decision as to what they do,” he told Sky Sports.
“Do they give him £300,000-a-week? I’ve always said they will have a problem until Mesut Ozil leaves the club.
“Every day he’s there, every other top player will want what he’s on. It’s a huge problem and not a new one.
“If they want to keep Aubameyang they will have to pay him big money, but Arsenal may look at it and think if we give him £300,000-a-week for the next two or three years, is he going to be the same player?
“He’s nearly 31 and by the time he’s 34 he’s not going to be the same player. I don’t care who you are, at 34 you are not the same player.”
Aubameyang at Arsenal
2018/2019 season: Since joining Arsenal in February 2018, Aubameyang has tallied 16 goals in Premier League play. According to Opta statistics, that gives him a minutes per goal ratio of 104.6, which sets the record for the best minutes per goal ratio in Premier League history (minimum 10 goals).
Aubameyang became the first player to reach 10 goals in the Premier League that season, following a brace in Arsenal’s 4–2 victory over Tottenham Hotspur in the North London derby.
Aubameyang finished the season with two goals in a 3–1 away win at Burnley, meaning he ended the season sharing the Premier League Golden Boot title with Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mané, on 22 goals.
2019–20: Aubameyang was named the Premier League Player of the Month for September, beating the likes of Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold, Tottenham’s Son Heung-min and Manchester City duo Kevin De Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez to the award.
On 5 November 2019, after Granit Xhaka was stripped of the Arsenal captaincy following his angry reaction to getting booed by the Arsenal supporters during their Premier League game against Crystal Palace F.C.,the then head coach Unai Emery confirmed that Aubameyang would take over as the new Arsenal captain.
Aubameyang scored twice in Arsenal’s 3-2 win over Everton to become joint top scorer in the Premier League, tied on 17 with Leicester’s Jamie Vardy.