Arsenal have been sent a Nicolas Pepe message by Lyon CEO Jean-Michel Aulas which could make their Houssem Aouar transfer pursuit even more difficult.
The Gunners have been chasing the midfielder throughout the summer after guiding the Ligue 1 side to the Champions League semi-finals.
And the north London side have been getting close, “agreeing” personal terms with the Frenchman, leaving just the fee to negotiate.
But Get Football France have reported that Aulas is comparing the midfielder’s value to the player that broke the Gunners’ transfer record.
Speaking to Le Progres, the chief said: “If Pepe is worth the price that they paid for him, then Houssem, who is an international player, is worth more than €30m.”
Arsenal have been sent a Nicolas Pepe message by Lyon’s CEO amid Houssem Aouar transfer interest
(Image: 2020 Icon Sport)
Pepe arrived from Lille last summer for £72m, eclipsing the club’s original record fee paid for captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
But Aulas stated last week that the Gunners had made a ‘timid’ offer for Aouar, but Mikel Arteta’s side look certain to improve on that as the deadline approaches.
The Lyon chief said: “There was a timid offer.
“We felt like either they didn’t consider the fact that this is a player in the French national team.
The Gunners paid £72m for Pepe last summer
(Image: 2020 AMA Sports Photo Agency)
“So it was not an offer that was even susceptible to making us consider a sale.”
When asked about his plans after the defeat to Liverpool, Arteta said: “Well we are trying to improve the team.
“There’s a week to go, there’s a lot of things happening in and out.
“We don’t have any news on new players and either with players that might leave the football club.
And Lyon chief Aulas believes this makes midfielder Aouar ‘worth more than €30m’
(Image: 2020 Pool)
“It’s a week to go,…