‘Arsenal can’t invest the price’: Lyon chief casts doubt over Gunners’ Aouar swoop

‘Arsenal can’t invest the price’: Lyon chief casts doubt over Gunners’ Aouar swoop

Olympique Lyonnais president Jean-Michel Aulas has moved to play down the links between star man Houssem Aouar and Premier League giants Arsenal.

Lyon standout

Speculation surrounding the future of gifted midfielder Aouar has of course been rampant this summer.

The 22-year-old enjoyed another stellar campaign at the Groupama Stadium in 2019/20, playing a key role as Lyon bounced back from a disappointing Ligue 1 finish to shock the masses en route to the Champions League’s semi-finals.

Aouar proved the touch of class required in the middle of the park for Rudi Garcia’s men, linking defence to attack with guile and a cutting edge.

All told, across 41 appearances in all competitions, the Frenchman racked up an impressive 9 goals and 10 assists.

‘Arsenal can’t invest the price’: Lyon chief casts doubt over Gunners’ Aouar swoop

OL STADIUM, LYON, FRANCE – 2020/02/26: Houssem Aouar of Olympique Lyonnais during the Uefa Champions League match between Olympique Lyonnais and Juventus Fc. Olympique Lyonnais wins 1-0 over Juventus Fc. (Photo by Marco Canoniero/LightRocket via Getty Images)

‘Arsenal don’t want to’

As such, it has since come as little surprise to see some of European football’s heavyweights tipped to swoop for Aouar.

Until recently, the clubs most persistently linked had been Manchester City and Juventus.

Recent weeks, however, have seen a new suitor take centre stage in the race for Aouar’s services.

The outfit in question? Arsenal.

Late last month, transfer expert Fabrizio Romano went as far as to assure that the Gunners were readying an assault for the Lyon standout, with Mikel Arteta ‘in love’ with Aouar.

This, in turn, was followed by word stemming from the French media that Arsenal had seen a proposal, worth €35 million, along with the services of an unnamed player (since revealed to be Matteo Guendouzi), rejected by Lyon.

Matteo Guendouzi

Arsenal’s French midfielder Matteo Guendouzi celebrates after Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang latched onto Guendouzi’s pass to score their second goal to equalise 2-2 during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur at the Emirates Stadium in London on September 1, 2019. (Photo by Ben STANSALL / AFP)

As outlined above, however, despite the mounting links between club and player, if the latest comments on the part of Lyon’s president are anything to go by, then Arsenal’s fans may be well served in tempering their expectations surrounding the potential arrival of Aouar.

Speaking to Gunners reporter Chris Wheatley this weekend, Jean-Michel Aulas was drawn directly on the interest of Mikel Arteta’s men in his side’s star man.

Aulas, though, was quick to pour cold water on the links, hinting that Arsenal do not possess the level of funds required to meet Lyon’s asking price:

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This article was edited by Josh Barker.

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