Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang joined Chelsea on deadline day in the summer transfer window after leaving Arsenal earlier this year.
The 33-year-old left the Emirates Stadium following after a series of disciplinary issues which resulted in him losing the Gunners club captaincy role. Aubameyang secured a free transfer to Barcelona in the January transfer window after his relationship with Mikel Arteta broke down.
The Gabonese striker returned to the Premier League after completing a deadline day move to the Blues, reuniting with Thomas Tuchel before the German was sacked just days later. Arsenal are currently leading the way at the top of the Premier League and will be looking to maintain their two point gap above Manchester City with a win against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
Following his exit from the Emirates Stadium, Aubameyang has had plenty to say about Arteta with the pair exchanging comments in an ongoing war of words. football.london takes a look at everything that’s been said by the Chelsea striker after his relationship with Arteta broke down, along with the Spaniard’s response to the criticism he has received.
What Aubameyang has said about Arteta
In the Amazon All or Nothing: Arsenal series, the controversy is played out in greater depth than fans previously understood. While it is obvious that not all of what went on is shown, Mikel Arteta is seen chatting with the director of media communications Mark Gonnella after a press conference when he divulges further info about the situation.
Arteta says: “That’s why I have everything documented with the dates, the times, the conversation, how it happened, why it happened… Because if one day it’s needed [Arteta then symbolises showing a document]. He’s [Aubameyang] been late apart from all the issues many times. The club has got a tradition. When you get paid that much money…”
That’s where the conversation is cut off in the scene. Strong words and clearly the Spaniard was steadfast with his position on Aubameyang.
Speaking ahead of Aubameyang’s move to Chelsea, Arteta would only reference how grateful the club should be to him. “Listen, it’s a long time since that happened. I cannot go back each time there is a series. I have made my comments on that. I was really clear and honest with my opinion.
“What has been done has always been done to defend the club and put it in the best possible position, and be always as clear as, honest and consistent as we can. Auba is an exceptional player.
“He did so much for us. He was our captain, and I think we have to be grateful, very grateful as well, for what he did for this club.”
When asked if he would get a good reception returning to the Emirates Stadium as a Chelsea player, Arteta again praised the forward. Although he admitted that there was a lack of alignment in the player and club’s trajectory.
“I hope he does because I think he deserves that,” he said. “There are moments in life, there are moments in your career, and sometimes the trajectory or the objective of each individual is different to the clubs – and you have to respect that.”
Arteta has also been questioned about Aubameyang’s criticism of his management methods in press conferences throughout the season. On one occasion, the Spaniard responded: “People are free to discuss what they want.
“I have never been in a better dressing room [than this season] – more enjoyable, more hard-working, a better relationship between staff and players and it is an absolute pleasure as a coach to be a part of this group.”