His second goal of the night in a 3-0 win over Rennes was more than enough to see the Gunners into the last eight of the Europa League with a 4-3 aggregate win which sees them join Chelsea in today’s draw.
And with Manchester City, Liverpool, Tottenham and Manchester United set also to learn their Champions League fate, it marks a heroic week for English teams.
“I needed a mask which represents me and that’s the Black Panther,” Aubameyang said. “In Gabon we call the national team the Panthers!
“I missed two chances to close the game but the most important thing is that we won and everybody is happy and proud.
“Rennes were a bit nervous and angry as well but that’s football sometimes and it can happen like that.”
Aubameyang was booked for the celebration, but it was the one sour note from a clinical if not particularly overwhelming performance by Arsenal that keeps manager Unai Emery in the hunt for his fourth success in this competition.
“The Europa League grew up a lot,” he said. “Now it is giving a possibility to play in Champions League.
“In a domestic league like in England we are six playing for top four so two teams are going out. So the Europa League is giving us a big opportunity also.
“But it is not just about qualification for the Champions League. Also it is one title.
“I said to my players, I am excited about this competition. It’s a title. We can feel the possibility to win a title with difficult moments like today.”
Aubameyang should have been flagged offside in the build-up to the second Arsenal goal, scored by Ainsley Maitland-Niles, and Rennes coach Julien Stephan suggested the big decisions had gone in Arsenal‘s favour throughout.
“On the offside, it was very clearly an injustice – a manifest error,” he said. “A commission decided that Alexandre Lacazette’s elbow against BATE was only worth two games.
“Then, when already on a yellow, he made a challenge which was over the mark, but the decision didn’t go our way. There were a few elements against us.
“It’s a learning curve for a club of our level, we don’t have the power of Arsenal.”