FA CUP FINAL: ARSENAL SKIPPER, AUBAMEYANG HAD PLANNED TO MOVE TO CHELSEA NEXT JANUARY

Gabonese skipper of Arsenal, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang who leads the North London side to face Chelsea today had plotted to move to the opponents’ camp in January.

Information however has it that his high wage demand saw off what could have been a dramatic switch of the player who has scored 27 goals for Arsenal this season.

He will be the key player for the club in today’s all-London FA Cup final, which will also be the first in 139 editions to be played behind closed doors.

Aubameyang’s contract expires at the end of next season, was said to be keen on a move that would no-doubt have infuriated Gunners’ supporters. 

But insiders said that a subsequent request for a staggering salary – which would have made him comfortably the highest-paid player in Chelsea’s history – put an end to the prospect at the time.

Aubamayeng signed for Arsenal from Borussia Dortmund for £56m in 2018. Since his arrival, only Mohamed Salah has scored more Premier League goals than his 49.

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard is currently looking for a striker, but the Gabon international would have to lower his demands to make the prospect of a deal a reality.

Aubameyang has scored 27 goals this season and Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta will be desperate to keep him, with the likes of Barcelona and AC Milan circling.

Fans fear that Wembley may see his final outing for the Gunners, although much will depend on the result. 

Should Arsenal defeat their rivals, they will qualify for the Europa League and the increased revenue that would bring will raise the likelihood of them being able to tie the striker down.