Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas insists the club are not desperate to raise cash this summer – coming as a blow to Arsenal in their pursuit of Houssem Aouar.
Mikel Arteta is desperate to get his hands on Aouar before Monday’s transfer deadline, but the Gunners are currently struggling to agree a transfer fee with Lyon.
The French club value their star midfielder at £54million, meaning Arsenal’s reported offer of £36million falls way below their asking price.
Aouar is keen to join Arteta’s side and reunite with former team-mate Alexandre Lacazette in north London, having remained friends with the striker since his 2017 departure from Lyon.
Arsenal remain hopeful of signing Houssem Aouar from Lyon before Monday’s transfer deadline
(Image: AFP via Getty Images)
But if Lyon refuse to budge on their £54million asking price, the Gunners are highly unlikely to be able to afford him.
Before setting his sights on Aouar, Arteta was interested in signing Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey – however the Spanish outfit were not prepared to sell him for anything less than his £45million release clause.
That price seemingly proved too steep for Arsenal, which means they will find it difficult to meet Lyon’s demands for Aouar.
But Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has suggested the club are in no hurry to cash in on the midfielder
And to make matters worse, Aulas has suggested they do not need to accept a cut-price offer for the Frenchman.
When quizzed on claims he has agreed a £25million deal with Hertha Berlin for Jeff Reine Adelaide, the Lyon chief said: “The numbers & information are wrong.
“Lyon looking for money? We invested more than €20m in [Lucas] Paqueta!”
Aulas has pointed to their recent £19million purchase of Lucas Paqueta as proof that they don’t need to raise funds this summer