Arsenal are still yet to agree a transfer fee with Lyon for Houssem Aouar – but the player’s personal terms are “not an issue”.
The Gunners are keen to sign Aouar before next week’s transfer deadline, with reports suggesting they have tabled an opening £32million offer.
That falls way below Lyon’s asking price, nevertheless, as the French club are looking to receive £54million for their star midfielder this summer.
On Saturday, Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas revealed Arsenal are nowhere near their valuation for Aouar, meaning he expects the player to stay put at the Groupama Stadium.
Responding to an article claiming Aouar had chosen to join Arsenal, Aulas wrote on Twitter: “@OL there will be very few departures: for Houssem Arsenal is much too far from his value: we count on him to make a big game in Lorient and lead OL in CL next year.”
Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano insists Arsenal are no closer to striking an agreement with Lyon, however Aouar has set his sights on joining them.
Romano posted on Twitter: “Today’s sentences by president Aulas confirm the situation about Aouar… nothing has changed now or yesterday.
“He’s the first target – Aouar would like to join #AFC, personal terms not an issue
“NO agreement with OL at the moment – Deal still on but Aulas wants €60m [£54m]”.
Arsenal appear unlikely to reach an agreement with Lyon, given they have already struggled to complete a £45million deal for Atletico Madrid star Thomas Partey in the summer window.
According to Get French Football News, Lyon would be prepared to accept an improved bid of £45million plus bonuses for Aouar.
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Yet it remains to be seen whether the Gunners have that money to spend in the current climate.
Arteta may be forced to cash in on a player before tabling another offer for Aouar, with Matteo Guendouzi up for sale at the Emirates this summer.
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