Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is one of the world’s top strikers. He’s been lighting up the English Premier League with Arsenal following an excellent spell in Germany with Borussia Dortmund. The lightning quick frontman started out at AC Milan though with his brother Willy. Their careers could not be any more different.
The Arsenal man’s 32-year-old sibling was once tipped for big things. He moved from Italian side Triestina at just 17 to the San Siro. The second oldest Aubameyang brother, behind his other brother Catilina, impressed in black and red, making his first team debut for the Italian outfit in 2007. This was as good as it got for the two Aubameyang brothers in Milan, with young brother Pierre-Emerick not even making an appearance for I Rossoneri.
In 2011 both of them departed the San Siro. Whilst the younger Aubameyang moved to Saint Etienne in France, the elder moved to Rugby Park to ply his trade with Mixu Paatelainen’s Kilmarnock.
The Rugby Park faithful probably didn’t know what to do with the announcement of the Gabon international in January 2011. Whilst his time at Milan was a promising sign, Killie boss Paatelainen’s comments about the player were not.
On the day Aubameyang signed, the Killie boss told BBC Scotland: “He is listed on many websites as a striker, but he will be a midfielder for us. He is a strong player, technically gifted with relative pace and I hope he will improve while with us.”
So with his position up in the air, it seemed like the Gabon international was to start alongside Alexei Eremenko in midfield. He made his debut as a 32nd minute substitute against Hamilton, before making his first start in a 1-0 away victory against Motherwell, where he played as a striker.
What could have been
He clearly had physical traits similar to his brother, with decent pace and good physicality his biggest attributes. One thing that clearly didn’t run in the family was goal-scoring, with Aubameyang’s ability as a striker leaving a lot to be desired.
His one and only goal would come in his penultimate fixture for Killie, again away to Motherwell. Just four minutes into the second half at Fir Park, Aubameyang scored with a close range effort to level the game. It finished 1-1 and it was a pivotal goal for the Ayrshire men. It all but secured fifth place in the league, a feat they have only achieved once since then.
From Kilmarnock he moved back to his homeland Gabon to play for Akanda FC. He would change from striker, or a midfielder, to defender at his new side. It did little for his career, failing to make one appearance for the team based in Libreville. From there he would move to FC Kray, a German Fourth Division side.
It’s still amusing, given how their careers have panned out, that it was Willy Aubameyang that made an appearance for AC Milan, not Pierre-Emerick. Killie fans will perhaps not remember the lesser known Aubameyang with much fondness. Their club provides a weird period in the versatile footballers’ career though.
At the age of 32 he is now without club whilst his brother is tearing up the Premier League with Arsenal. At least the Gabon international can say he turned out for Milan and Kilmarnock, something the Arsenal forward can’t.