Former Borussia Dortmund manager Peter Stoger says Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang skipped team meetings and refused to run in training to force a move to Arsenal.
Speaking to German outlet Sport Bild, Stoger explained the methods the Arsenal star used to try and complete his transfer in January.
“He (Aubameyang) left me no other choice,” the 52-year-old said. “He trained well four days of the week. But to underline his wish for a transfer, he skipped team meetings before games or refused to run during the final training.
“We did our best to keep him for at least another half a year, but Auba wasn’t ready for that. But Auba personally apologised to me before joining Arsenal. He told me that his behaviour had nothing to do with my person and that he had felt my support.
After giving half of his twenties to Dortmund, Aubameyang clearly wanted to take on a new challenge and was willing to do whatever it took to make that happen. We’ve already heard similar stories about the striker’s behaviour towards the end of his time with the club from Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke.
As pointed out back then, there was a sense that Dortmund owed Aubameyang a move though. In 2016, when Hummels, Gündogan and Mkhitaryan all left the club, the striker turned down some big money moves to stay. Without him, the Bundesliga side would’ve had a lot of trouble for the following year and a half.
This was really Aubameyang’s last chance to follow those three out the door. The striker turns 30 next June, by which point very few top clubs would pay the mega-millions Dortmund were demanding.
Whilst his behaviour was poor, you can understand why he felt it was necessary. By comparison, it doesn’t seem like Arsenal have had any problems with his application so far. Let’s hope that continues.