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Barcelona star Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and his family have been moved to a five-star hotel after their violent ordeal – when the attacker was found to reject the advice to hire 24-hour security.
Aubameyang was reportedly attacked by a group of four men and threatened with firearms and iron bars in front of his wife Alysha Behague and their two terrified children.
The thieves escaped with jewelry after Aubameyang was forced to open a safe at the property in Castelldefels, a coastal town south of Barcelona.
Aubameyang, 33, was beaten on the chin with an iron bar, while Behague received a blow to the head, but they decided not to undergo hospital treatment so as not to further frighten their children.
Catalan news channel ARA reported that Barcelona had transferred them to the luxury hotel Princesa Sofia and provided them with psychological counseling.
The children — Curtys, 11, and Pierre, six — saw their parents held on the floor for an hour as the thieves ransacked the house in the early hours of Monday morning.
Barcelona footballer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and his family were attacked by a gang of thieves, who searched their home in the early hours of Monday morning.
Aubameyang was at home with wife Alysha Behague when the men broke into their property
Police are looking for the attackers and believe they belong to an organized gang of Kosovo Albanians.
The gang apparently guarded Aubameyang’s property while he was in the United States during Barcelona’s pre-season tour.
At that point, they tried unsuccessfully to enter the house, but were deterred by an alarm. However, on this occasion, the alarm was turned off because Aubameyang and his family were at home.
The gang easily climbed over a garden gate to gain entry and took off in a white Audi A3.
ARA also reports that Babanzila Meshak – a young Gabonese footballer who plays for Terrassa, a fourth division, and has lived in Aubameyang’s house – was at home but unharmed during the robbery.
According to reports, their children Pierre (left), six, and Curtys (right), who is 11, saw their parents held on the floor for an hour while the gang searched their home.
Aubameyang was beaten by the crooks, who intimidated themselves and Behague with firearms and iron bars during the nighttime robbery
Barcelona have advised their players to hire private security for their properties to deter criminals.
However, as Aubameyang is linked with a departure from Barcelona this summer, he had not yet hired anyone to protect his property.
The incident comes as Aubameyang has been linked with a return to the Premier League after interest from Chelsea, just seven months after he left Arsenal after falling out with Gunners manager Mikel Arteta over disciplinary violations.
Aubameyang, who was heavily scrutinized in Amazon’s fly-on-the-wall documentary about Arsenal for his alleged bad attitude, is known for driving flashy sports cars and showing off his jewelry and designer brands.
Aubameyang is known for showing off its luxury sports cars and showing off its designer brands
It is not the first time that Barcelona players have been victims of robbery and theft, with Aubameyang’s team-mate Robert Lewandowski having his £59,000 watch stolen outside the club’s training ground.
Lewandowski’s watch was snatched as the 33-year-old greeted fans ahead of an evening training session with Barca.
The thief allegedly opened Lewandowski’s car door and took the watch while the Polish international signed autographs, before attempting to run after the thief himself.
Police quickly arrested a suspect and Lewandowski got his watch back before taking part in the practice session ahead of Sunday’s LaLiga game at Real Sociedad.
New signing Robert Lewandowski was also the victim of theft as his watch was stolen outside the club’s training ground this year
Last November, young winger Ansu Fati’s home was broken into as he watched the club play against local rivals Espanyol below.
Part of the 19-year-old’s family was downstairs at the time of the break-in, in which money, watches and expensive jewelry were reportedly stolen.
Concerns were raised by family members around 10 p.m. when ‘noises’ were heard from above, where attackers had allegedly gained entry to the property.
A 911 call was then made by the family involved, but when police arrived they found no one upstairs, leading to the belief that those who entered had since fled.
Fati, 19, made a trip to Mossos police station in Sant Cugat on Monday, according to La Vanguardia, explaining what was stolen during the robbery.
Aubameyang’s teammate Ansu Fati had his home broken into last year while his family was at home
In 2018, three Barcelona stars were targeted by thieves. Midfielder Philippe Coutinho returned home to find his house had been broken into, while a group of men broke into defender Gerard Pique’s home as he prepared to play for Spain at the World Cup.
Later that year, thieves broke into left-back Jordi Alba’s property while his family was inside.
Also in 2019, there was another wave of robberies and break-ins when former midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng reportedly lost jewelery and money between £255,000 and £350,000 after a mob broke into his house while he was playing a match.
Aubameyang’s break-in comes after former Manchester United star Paul Pogba claimed he was the victim of an £11 million blackmail scheme by a gang that dragged him into an apartment in Paris and threatened him with assault rifles.
The 29-year-old, who won the World Cup with France, said the men wanted the money for ‘protection services’ going back 13 years, including time spent in Manchester.
Paul Pogba (pictured with wife Zilay Pogba) claimed he was the victim of an £11 million blackmail scheme by a gang that dragged him into an apartment in Paris and threatened him with assault rifles
Pogba claims two gunmen said they were “discreetly protecting him” for more than a decade, including two spells at Manchester United, the last of which ended earlier this year.
The Frenchman said the gang has been threatening him for four months.
In April acts of intimidation were committed in Manchester, and later around the Italian city of Turin, where Pogba currently plays for Juventus.
The gang also allegedly took Pogba at the end of March to a flat in the Paris suburb of Lagny-sur-Marne, where Pogba grew up. There, the gang members accused Pogba of not helping them financially since he became a professional player.
During police interrogations, Paul Pogba said he had always been close to his childhood friends and helped them financially when he could.
But in January, he evicted one from his Manchester home after discovering the unidentified man had used Pogba’s credit card to steal €200,000 – the equivalent of £170,000.