The striker had returned to Gabon on the finish of March to play DR Congo in an Africa Cup of Nations qualification recreation.

He then returned to England and performed in opposition to Liverpool within the Premier League and Slavia Prague within the first leg of the Europa League quarterfinal.

After wanting wanting his standard kind, he then missed Arsenal’s final league recreation in opposition to Sheffield United.

Ahead of his aspect’s return fixture in opposition to Slavia Prague on Thursday, Aubameyang revealed the rationale for his absence on social media.

“Hey guys, thanks for all the messages and calls. Unfortunately, I contracted Malaria while being on national team duty in Gabon a few weeks ago,” he wrote on Instagram.

“I’ve spent a few days in hospital this week but I’m already feeling much better every day, thanks to the great doctors that detected and treated the virus so quickly.

“I wasn’t actually feeling myself the final couple weeks however might be again stronger than ever quickly! Will be watching my boys now, enormous recreation for us! Let’s go and get it.”

Malaria, which is transmitted through the bite of female Anopheles mosquitoes, is both a preventable and treatable disease — yet 409,000 people died of it in 2019.

The African region was home to 94% of all malaria cases and deaths in 2019, according to the World Health Organization.

Speaking after the match, Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta confirmed Aubameyang had returned to his home and hoped he would be back to full fitness soon.

“We’ll see how he recovers. I feel he’ll want a number of days to get well from that,” Arteta said. “He desires to be again as quickly as attainable, that is what he stated to me.”

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is recovering after contracting malaria.Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is recovering after contracting malaria.

Powerful image

Without its captain, Arsenal still managed to beat Slavia Prague 4-0 to progress into the Europa League semifinals where it will play Villarreal.

Nicolas Pepe opened the scoring before Bukayo Saka and a brace from Alexandre Lacazette secured an emphatic victory against the Czech side.

Slavia Prague was without Ondrej Kudela after UEFA banned the defender for 10 games for racist behavior towards Rangers’ midfielder Glen Kamara in the previous round.

The incident occurred late in the match when Kudela was seen saying something into Kamara’s ear with his hand covering his mouth.

After the game, Rangers manager Steven Gerrard spoke to the media where he confirmed that Kamara told him that he was racially abused by Kudela.

Ahead of kick-off, Arsenal players took the knee as Slavia Prague remained standing. Frenchman Lacazette, Arsenal’s captain for the night, knelt directly in front of the opposition and gazed directly at them.

The act of kneeling was taken up by the Premier League last season in solidarity with Black Lives Matter.

“The gamers requested me and the membership,” Arteta said after the game. “They needed to take that initiative and so they had the best causes for it, so the membership and I had been very supportive.

“Thankfully the referees and UEFA have been supportive as well, so I think it was a good gesture.”

Arsenal's Alexandre Lacazette, left, takes a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.Arsenal's Alexandre Lacazette, left, takes a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.

The workplace of Czech President Milos Zeman strongly condemned the 10-match ban handed all the way down to Kudela.

The Head of the Office of President of the Republic, Vratislav Mynar, penned an open letter that criticized UEFA’s choice, claiming its combat in opposition to racism was “the pinnacle of hypocrisy, positive discrimination, and embarrassing pandering to silly trends.”

Mynar additionally claimed that the decision united soccer followers within the Czech Republic.

“I very much appreciate the fact that the Czech public, across the whole society, does not identify with your verdict. On the contrary — you managed to unite old rivals — even temporarily,” he wrote.

“We will not kneel down in front of you. No threats work against a Czech football fan.”

Mynar stated Czech President Milos Zeman had been knowledgeable of the state of affairs and expressed his sympathy with all those that had been disillusioned by Wednesday’s choice.

In an announcement to NCS Sport, UEFA stated “it has a zero tolerance against racism and any player who wants to take the knee is allowed to do so in our competitions.”

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Sources