Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang hails "little brother" at Barcelona after rediscovering form
The ex- Arsenal captain swapped the Emirates for the Camp Nou on the final day of the January transfer window after a well-documented fall-out with Gunners boss Mikel Arteta. Now thriving in Catalonia, Aubameyang has put his red-hot form partially down to reuniting with Dembele, who he played alongside at former club Borussia Dortmund.
Aubameyang scored twice in their 3-1 victory over Celta Vigo on Tuesday which was marred by a sickening head injury to Ronald Araujo. The strikes took his LaLiga tally to 11 goals in 15 games and the 32-year-old revealed regarding post-match Dembele, via Goal : "He's my little brother. We have spent a long time together since the first day. When I arrived in Dortmund, I knew him a bit. With time we have built up this relationship which is like a brother."
The mercurial French winger, however, could leave the Blaugrana this summer when his contract expires after costing the club £135.5million. His teammate is desperate for him to stay, though, as Aubameyang added: "I love him a lot and that's why things go so well. I'm happy for him, I don't know if he'll stay or not but I hope with all my heart that he will."
The Gabon international went on to say regarding the midweek win: "I think today [Tuesday] we did things right. The first half was a bit complicated, the second was much better. I think we lost a lot of balls in the first half, we have to improve that, me more than anybody. We will continue working so we don't give the ball away so easily. But we scored three and that’s something very positive."
The match was sadly marred by an incident which saw Araujo rushed to hospital. The 23-year-old defender was involved in a sickening clash of heads with teammate Gavi and an ambulance was called onto the Camp Nou pitch.
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Manager Xavi Hernandez revealed shortly after the full-time whistle that Araujo was out of danger and Barcelona later issued a statement confirming more good news on Wednesday afternoon. "Complementary tests on first-team player Ronald Araujo have been successful and he has been discharged from the hospital," the club tweeted. "The evolution will mark his availability."
The scoreline was 3-1 when the incident occurred, with two goals from Aubameyang and an opener from Memphis Depay handing Barca all three points. Celta's talisman, Iago Aspas, pulled one back for the visitors early in the second half but their hopes of a comeback were soon dashed when defender Jeison Murillo was sent off.
Xavi thankfully told reporters: "The doctor has told us he is conscious. He will spend the night in hospital but he is out of danger. The doctor said we shouldn't worry, that he will spend the night in hospital as a precaution, nothing more."