Arsenal transfer target Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang continues to be linked with a move to the Gunners for the upcoming transfer window—a move that would be an absolute steal for the North London club.
Aubameyang will likely see transfer interest from the Gunners once the window officially opens at the end of the season, and whilst many other clubs are thought to be interested in signing him (per talkSPORT), the Gunners could well end up landing the Gabon striker.
Which would simply be huge for the club.
Aubameyang has been in scintillating form in Ligue 1 this year—breaking out for Saint-Etienne with 17 goals and eight assists this season in just 29 appearances. That form has allowed the French club to go undefeated in its past 10 league matches, and it's little surprise to see that throughout that streak, Aubameyang has scored nine goals and four assists for the club.
But more specifically, Aubameyang would be a great fit at the Gunners—meshing perfectly with their system and starting squad immediately, should he make a move.
Likely to be paired with Olivier Giroud at the top of the attack (who came from Ligue 1 last season himself), Aubameyang would provide a different threat for Arsenal going forward—benefiting greatly off the hold-up style of game that Giroud has been so effective at this year.
The Gabon international is very strong alongside a striker who can distribute and attract defensive attention, and Giroud has shown that so far this season. Throw in his speed and the creative strengths that Arsenal would have behind him in Santi Cazorla, Jack Wilshere and Lukas Podolski, and the arrival of Aubameyang would make the Gunners a very strong team next year.
Throughout the years, Arsene Wenger has shown himself to be a very shrewd manager when it comes to the transfer window; he knows how to find a deal when needed. The signings of Nacho Monreal and Santi Cazorla from Malaga, as well as Lukas Podolski, were all drastically underpriced and allowed the Gunners to get a great return given how much they spend on the trio.
Aubameyang could well be another steal, as he's currently only listed at around £9 million (per Transfermarkt), which would be a steal. If the Gunners could make that deal happen for anything under £10 million (or really even £15 million given his talent), that would be a great signing and one that would no doubt carry the club toward success in 2013.
The biggest question that remains is whether they can entice him into a move.
The 23-year-old is under contract at the club until 2016, but it seems very likely that he could move this summer given the latest interest in him.
Big-spending club Paris Saint-Germain were thought to be interested, but according to comments made recently by the striker's agent and his father (per Patrick Haond of Sky Sports), a move to a slightly smaller team might be more ideal—perhaps bringing the Gunners into play once more:
[PSG] are following him, but we don't know who will be the coach there next season. There are also a lot of forwards in their squad. If it is important for him to leave, it is more important for him to play. We have not yet decided if it would be better for him to join an intermediate club or join a big club immediately. ... [player's agent]
Considering the quality of his season and the improvement he could make, he will be a candidate to join a very big club. We want to go high, but respecting all parties. It is out of the question to block his improvement just to earn a lot of money. No-one will influence me with big money. [player's father]
Aubameyang will surely see interest from many clubs this summer, but it's the interest from Arsenal that should be most interesting to all involved.
The Gunners can offer him the chance to play in a great system, with a world-class manager, and if they can offer him Champions League football as well, they could well find themselves nabbing one of the hottest rising stars in world football. And if they can get him at the price currently listed, it would be a huge steal for the North London club.
The fact that he's French as well? Well, that's just an added bonus for Wenger.
Hit me up on Twitter for more sports goodness: Follow @dantalintyre