Barcelona are reportedly eyeing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as an alternative if they are unable to sign Lautaro Martinez this summer.

According to a report by Spanish publication Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona have identified Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as an option to bolster their attack in the summer transfer window in case they do not sign Lautaro Martinez. The Arsenal captain is in the final year of his deal with the Premier League giants.

Aubameyang has long been one of the most prolific strikers in Europe, having been a stalwart for Borussia Dortmund before joining Arsenal over two years ago. In only his first full season with the north Londoners, the Gabonese striker won the Premier League Golden Boot even as his side missed out on a top four finish.

This term, he was promoted to the role of being the club captain and has been a clear standout even as Arsenal have struggled for consistency. Those struggles have paved the way for an uncertain future for Aubameyang at the Emirates, especially with his contract with the Gunners running out in a year’s time. Barcelona are now showing an interest in him.

Barcelona bound? (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
Barcelona bound? (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

That Barcelona are in the market for an attacking reinforcement is quite well known. The La Liga champions have been overly dependent on Lionel Messi, with Antoine Griezmann slow to settle in at Camp Nou while Luis Suarez is in the twilight of his career. To make matters worse, Ousmane Dembele has had a constant battle with injuries.

Ansu Fati is rated quite highly and is one for the future, but he is unlikely to be a regular anytime soon. Finally, Philippe Coutinho is expected to be loaned out again at the very least this summer, meaning Barcelona’s need to sign an attacker makes sense. For the longest time, Lautaro Martinez has been their priority.

Recent reports have even suggested that Barcelona have agreed personal terms with the Argentine, and a summer move could be in the offing. However, Martinez’s €111 million release clause is proving to be a problem for the Blaugrana, whose financial situation is dire. Aubameyang is, thus, a viable alternative for Barcelona to consider.

The report claims that since the 31-year-old is in the final year of his contract with Arsenal, his price tag would be a fraction of Martinez’s €111 million buyout clause. Furthermore, Aubameyang is open to the idea of leaving the Premier League giants in favour of a switch to Barcelona, even though he has insisted that he is happy at Arsenal.

So, while Barcelona are admittedly keen on signing Lautaro Martinez, his acquisition is not a given. Aubameyang would be a viable short-term option for the Catalan giants, with the Gabonese striker being an ideal stopgap solution till Fati is ready to become a regular.

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