Lyon striker Alexandre Lacazette has revealed he turned down a move to Newcastle United after the Magpies made a £19million bid for the Frenchman last week.
Rumours of Lacazette moving to Tyneside hit front page headlines in France last week, but sources close to the club denied the claims having being told that he was not for sale.
However, in his first interview since the news broke, the 24-year-old has revealed that he rejected a move to the Premier League side.
After scoring the first goal at Lyon’s new stadium in a 4-1 win over Troyes, Lacazette was asked whether he was aware of any attempt to lure him to the Premier League.
And the France international, who has scored nine goals in 23 appearances this season, says that he turned down the chance to play for Steve McClaren’s side.
“I read what you write in the media,” said Lacazette.
“Now I am at Olympique Lyonnais, I want to have a good second half of the season, so for me a departure is not valid.
“This is my agent, David Venditelli, who cares.
“He knows very well that I did not want to leave, so he declined the offer.”
With Newcastle scout Graham Carr said to be a big fan of Lacazette, the Magpies have reportedly been interested in the striker for several seasons.
Steve McClaren is in the market for a striker in the January transfer window and their need for a new goalscorer was clear in their 1-0 loss to Watford in the FA Cup third round yesterday.
The Magpies missed a number of chances to level the game after Watford captain Troy Deeney put his side in front in the first half.
Newcastle are currently 19th in the Premier League and face Manchester United at St James’ Park on Tuesday night.