Chelsea set to 'block' a Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang return to Barcelona following social media antics
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Chelsea will reportedly block a return to Barcelona for striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang this summer despite looking to offload the Gabon international less than a year on from signing the 33-year-old from La Blaugrana.
The former Arsenal captain has endured a torrid spell upon his return to London, making just 18 appearances across all competitions for the Blues, in which he has scored on just three occasions.
Additionally, Chelsea boss Graham Potter excluded Aubameyang from his squad for the Champions League knockout stages with the Gabonese striker yet to start in the Premier League since the World Cup-enforced break.
Admittedly, the ex-Arsenal favourite has been unlucky following his move to Stamford Bridge, having chosen to join the Blues in order to reunite with former Borussia Dortmund manager Thomas Tuchel, who was subsequently sacked just days after the 33-year-old's arrival.
However, Aubameyang hasn't helped his predicament, reportedly infuriating his current employers when returning to Camp Nou to support his former side in their recent 2-1 El Clasico victory over Real Madrid.
Barcelona forward Ferran Torres posted a picture of the two celebrating in the home changing room on his Instagram story, captioning the post, 'Grande,' meaning big or great in Spanish, and tagging Aubameyang.
Moreover, according to Spanish outlet AS, a return to Catalonia would be the striker's preference whilst other clubs, including Inter Milan, are also reportedly interested in the Gabon international.
The Chelsea striker's recent antics means that the hierarchy at Stamford Bridge are unlikely to sanction a return to Barcelona even though Xavi Hernandez's side would be expected to be able to afford the 33-year-old within their Financial Fair Play limitations.
Potter has handed Aubameyang just 16 minutes of Premier League football in over two months having excluded the striker from the last two matchday squads. As a result, it is unlikely that the 33-year-old will make a return on Saturday evening when the Blues host Aston Villa.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy
Topics: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Chelsea, Barcelona, Chelsea Transfer News & Rumours, Ferran Torres, El Clasico, Graham Potter