By Associated Press
BARCELONA: A group of masked men broke into the house of Barcelona forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and attacked and robbed him early Monday, the club said.
Barcelona confirmed the incident and said the player and his wife were doing well.
Authorities told the Spanish daily El País that Aubameyang was hit and forced to open a safe where the couple kept jewelry. The attackers allegedly threatened him and his wife with guns and iron bars.
Authorities said at least four men entered the player’s home and then escaped in a car.
The 33-year-old Aubameyang, a Gabon international, signed with Barcelona in the beginning of the year after long stints with Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga and Arsenal in the Premier League.
Aubameyang did not play in Barcelona’s 4-0 win over Valladolid in the Spanish league on Sunday evening. He is among the players expected to be sold to another team so the club can clear salary cap space.
Two weeks ago, new Barcelona signing Robert Lewandowski had a watch snatched from his arm as he arrived for practice at the club’s training center.
It is not uncommon for soccer players’ houses to be robbed in Spain, though the crimes usually happen when the athletes and their families are away during matches. Among the reported victims in the past were Casemiro, Álvaro Morata, Gerard Piqué, Samuel Umtiti, Jordi Alba and former Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane.
Spanish police a few years ago dismantled a gang that had been robbing players’ houses during games.