ARSENAL failed to secure a sell-on clause when they allowed Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to leave for nothing to join Barcelona.
Now the Spanish giants could cash in just six months later as Chelsea want the £15million-rated frontman as well as Barca team-mate Frenkie de Jong.
Barcelona did not even pay Aubameyang’s wages for the 23 games he played for them last season as Arsenal picked up the tab.
Emirates chiefs were so desperate to offload Auba after his fallout with boss Mikel Arteta that they agreed to pay his £7m wages for the rest of the season.
That call came back to bite them when the Gabon international scored 13 goals to fire Barca to second in LaLiga.
Arsenal terminated Aubameyang’s £350,000-a-week contract, so they were unable to insist on a cut of any future transfer.
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But the £42.5m signing of Robert Lewandowski means Auba is now surplus to requirements.
And Nou Camp bigwigs know Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel is keen to work with his former Borussia Dortmund player again.
Aubameyang agreed a pay cut to £80k a week when joining in January.
But Barca only started paying that this season due to the Gunners’ £7m Auba pay-off.
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Cash-strapped Barca are happy to sell so they can register £42.5m strike legend Lewandowski and four other summer buys.
Leeds winger Raphinha cost £47m and the Spanish giants paid Sevilla £55m to beat Chelsea to centre-back Jules Kounde.
Stamford Bridge defender Andreas Christensen and AC Milan midfielder Franck Kessie came in for free.
Ousmane Dembele and Sergi Roberto also cannot be registered until Barcelona slash their wage bill as they’ve both signed new contracts.
Chelsea have splashed out even more than Barca under new owner Todd Boehly – £178m so far this summer.
The Blues’ American backers have invested in £50m frontman Raheem Sterling from Manchester City, Kalidou Koulibaly from Napoli for £34m, and £62m Brighton left-back Marc Cucurella.
Chelsea also recruited Carney Chukwuemeka from Aston Villa for £20m and Gabriel Slonina from Chicago Fire for £12m.