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Barcelona boss Xavi reacts to Chelsea signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang | Football

Xavi says he’s enjoyed working with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang at Barcelona (Images: Getty)

Xavi admits he ‘feels bad’ after Barcelona decided to sell Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to Chelsea and has labeled his former striker a ‘gem’.

Chelsea signed ex-Arsenal captain Aubameyang for £10million on deadline day, with Blues defender Marcos Alonso joining the Nou Camp as part of the deal.

Aubameyang made a dream move to Barca just six months ago and Xavi admits he was reluctant to lose a player who was ‘a role model on and off the pitch’.

In 23 games for Barcelona last season, Aubameyang scored 13 goals, including a brace in a memorable 4-0 win over El Clasico rivals Real Madrid.

“I feel bad because he helped us a lot,” said Xavi. “He was a role model on and off the field.

“He made a big difference – look at his numbers. As a person he is a gem and always trains with a smile on his face.

“It’s a shame because you want those kinds of players in your squad but it was a good opportunity for him and for the club too.

Aubameyang spent six months in the Nou camp

Aubameyang spent six months at Nou Camp (Image: Getty)

“We had to put the pieces of the puzzle together and in the end we’re all happy I think.

“But I feel bad as a coach when I lose a player like Aubameyang. He was a role model for the club and for all players.”

Aubameyang sent a farewell message to Barcelona fans shortly after becoming a Chelsea player, saying it was an “indescribable” feeling playing for the La Liga giants.

He posted on social media: “Culers spent six months with you but it feels like six years to me.

“All the heart I have received is beyond words and especially in these days I wish you the best and I hope to see you soon. Many Thanks.’

On his move to Stamford Bridge, Aubameyang added: “I’m really happy. It’s an honor to be part of this team and I can’t wait to get started.

“I still have some business to do with the Premier League so it’s good to be back and it’s really exciting.”

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