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Latest On Aubameyang's AFCON Exit

New developments have surfaced regarding Gabon captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's departure from the Africa Cup of Nations last week.

Aubameyang Leaves AFCON

According to France-based football writer Matt Spiro, L'Equipe has confirmed Gabonese journalist Freddhy Koula's story about the reason why the Panthers' captain, along with teammate Mario Lemina, departed early from the showpiece in Cameroon.

It has been suggested that Aubameyang and Lemina were dismissed because of a disciplinary breach, and not for medical reasons, as they broke "all internal rules" by partying through the night at a Yaounde club the day before Gabon's match against Ghana.

The Gabonese then excluded Aubameyang and Lemina from the matchday squad against the Black Stars, citing that the players were unfit to participate due to health concerns. Subsequent to the game, both went back to their respective clubs to diagnose their health issues more comprehensively.

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According to Koula, though, this was apparently not the case. Coach Patrice Neveu, in agreement with the Gabonese Football Federation, reportedly decided to relieve the stars of their duties due to their ill-discipline.

Aubameyang has been at the centre of more than one issue relating to his discipline over the past month. He was stripped of the Arsenal captaincy in December by manager Mikel Arteta following a series of protocol breaches, before contracting Covid-19 while partying in Dubai during Gabon's pre-AFCON camp in the Middle East.

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The former Borussia Dortmund striker is his country's all-time goalscorer with 29 goals, but was unavailable to add to his tally and help his team as Gabon bowed out of the competition following a 7-6 penalty shootout loss to Burkina Faso at the round of 16 stage on Sunday.

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