Chelsea are growing increasingly confident of signing former Arsenal captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on deadline day after Todd Boehly included Marcos Alonso in his latest transfer offer to Barcelona. The Blues are desperate to sign a new striker before the summer transfer window closes on Thursday night, having let their club-record signing – Romelu Lukaku – return to Italy last month.
Boehly, who bought the club from Roman Abramovich earlier in the year, has already spent more than £250m this summer, bringing the likes of Wesley Fofana, Raheem Sterling and Kalidou Koulibaly to Stamford Bridge. But Chelsea’s underwhelming start to the season has convinced Boehly and Thomas Tuchel that more spending is needed and the Blues intend to bring in a new striker and midfielder before the window shuts.
Aubameyang, who only joined Barcelona in January, has emerged as Chelsea’s top target and there is a growing confidence at Stamford Bridge that the deal will be reached.
While Aubameyang has largely impressed during his brief spell at the Nou Camp – scoring 13 goals in 24 appearances – Barcelona are ready to offload him in order to bring in some much-needed funds. Manchester United also expressed interest in signing the former Gunners striker but Chelsea are at the front of the queue and have entered into advanced talks with Barcelona, according to Sky Sports.
It is claimed Chelsea’s latest offer would see Blues defender Alonso head to Barcelona in a player-plus- cash deal for Aubameyang. Sky Sports add that all parties are ‘positive, hopeful and willing’ to iron out a deal before the transfer window shuts at 11pm on Thursday.
Aubameyang suffered a minor fracture of his jaw in an attack on his home over the weekend and it appeared as though this could complicate Chelsea’s deal for the Gabon international.
But Chelsea are said to be sympathetic of Aubameyang’s injury and do not see it as a reason not to pursue a last-gasp summer deal. Chelsea fans will know Aubameyang well from his largely successful spell at London rivals Arsenal.
The striker scored 92 goals in 163 appearances for the Gunners and helped Mikel Arteta’s side win the FA Cup before he was stripped of the captaincy and exiled. While Aubameyang encountered problems at Arsenal – and Borussia Dortmund before his move to north London – Didi Hamann has endorsed Chelsea’s move. The former Liverpool and Germany midfielder told GGRecon:
‘Regarding Aubameyang, he had his antics at Borussia Dortmund before he went to Arsenal but if you get someone like him in, then you know what you’re getting.
‘If you find the key to the person, not the player, then I believe he will score you goals. I can’t think of too many better options for Chelsea than him.’