Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang reacts to scoring first hat-trick for Barcelona

Matt O'Connor-Simpson
Aubameyang has opened his Barcelona scoring account
Aubameyang has opened his Barcelona scoring account / Aitor Alcalde Colomer/GettyImages

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has reacted to opening his Barcelona scoring account with a hat-trick against Valencia on Sunday.

Aubameyang arrived at the Camp Nou on transfer deadline day, bringing his four-year association with Arsenal to an end. Since making that switch the striker has failed to net in his first three games in all competitions – but he ended that scoreless streak this weekend.

The former Arsenal man struck three times in a 4-1 win for Barcelona, latching onto Jordi Alba's long ball before powering home for his first on the half-hour mark. His second was a far simpler finish as he only had to tap Gavi's cross into an empty net.

He completed the hat-trick in the second half in fortunate fashion. Turning his back to evade Pedri's long-range effort, the ball nicked off his shirt and flew past Giorgi Mamardashvili in the Valencia goal. After initially being credited to the young midfielder, Aubameyang was awarded the goal after the game.

Reflecting on a memorable match at full-time, he said: "I'm very happy, I'm very happy, the important thing is that we won the game. The last time I played here at the Mestalla I scored a hat-trick with Arsenal, I like playing here, it's like my home."

The victory moves Barcelona up to fourth in La Liga, though they remain 15 points adrift of leaders and bitter rivals Real Madrid, albeit with a game in hand. Next up is a tense Europa League clash against Napoli on Thursday.

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