Patrick Kluivert believes Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang would be a good call to replace Luis Suarez at Barcelona, the former striker of the Catalan club revealed, speaking to Sport360.
Kluivert spent six years at Camp Nou, between 1998 and 2004, and during that time he scored 122 goals in 257 games. Suarez has already surpassed his tally and by a wide margin, despite the Uruguay international playing for Barcelona year and a half less so far, with 168 strikes in 227 appearances.
Suarez was once close to joining Arsenal. He angled for a move from Liverpool to the Emirates in 2013 and the club put in a bid of £40 million + £1, likely hoping to trigger his buyout clause, but the Merseysiders successfully tied him down to a new deal then and got an incredible season from him. He equalled the 31-goal Premier League record in 2013/14 (broken only last season by Mohamed Salah), previously jointly held by Alan Shearer and Cristiano Ronaldo, and earned a big-money move to Barcelona the following summer.
There are obviously very few strikers in the world capable of replicating the brilliance of Suarez, and Barcelona would be expecting no less from a long-term successor. Meanwhile, Kluivert believes Aubemeyang has what it takes to do the job.
Aubameyang is certainly a top-class striker, and at the moment he sits second to Salah on the Premier League top-scorers sheet with 15 goals to his name. However, with the Gabonese turning 30 in June this year, Kluivert says Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford would likely be a better choice. Aubameyang may be overall a better striker at the moment and on better form this season, but there’s no disputing the fact that Rashford wields huge talent and at the age of 21, he has a lot of time on his hands to improve further.
But if they want Rashford, Barcelona will have to act quickly as he is close to agreeing a new deal at Old Trafford, and once he puts his signature on it, it will be practically impossible to prise him away.
As for Aubameyang, he is probably already at the point where it is not practical for any suitor to press their advances. The Gunners only signed him 12 months ago on a three and a half year deal. He will be turning 32 when it expires, which puts Arsenal in a very strong position at the moment when it comes to his fate.