Premier League • England

Lacazette next club becomes clearer as club chief hints ‘compromises’ can secure deal

Alexandre Lacazette, Arsenal striker celebrates during the Premier League clash against Wolves

It is looking increasingly likely that Alexandre Lacazette will return to Lyon after his Arsenal contract expires – if what the French club have to say is anything to go by.

Lacazette is currently captaining Arsenal for the rest of the season, but it seems it will be his last representing them. The striker’s deal expires in the summer and he could walk away as a free agent.

Arsenal are in the market for a new centre-forward, while fellow out-of-contract option Eddie Nketiah has found more form in recent weeks.

With that in mind, the chances of Lacazette wanting to stay with the club are probably decreasing. Turning 31 later this month, he remains of interest to a number of other teams.

Among those linked with Lacazette for his post-Arsenal career have been West Ham, Juventus, Atletico Madrid and Barcelona. But one of the leading contenders for his signature is the very side from whom Arsenal signed him in 2017: Lyon.

Born in the city, Lacazette came through Lyon’s youth system and was a member of their first-team squad between 2010 and 2017. He scored 129 goals in 275 games for the French side.

In contrast, his Arsenal career has brought 71 goals from 203 games. Now, he could go back to where it all began.

Lyon are making no secret of their desire to reunite with Lacazette, who has already confirmed he remains in contact with them. During a press conference about a new contract for Maxence Caqueret, two key club officials made reference to the Arsenal man.

Technical director Vincent Ponsot said of Lacazette: “We’ll continue until the end. It’s a desire for us.”

Lacazette Arsenal exit looms this summer

Alexandre Lacazette will leave Arsenal this summer and has a number of offers across Europe, including a possible return to Lyon

And club president Jean-Michel Aulas is willing to push the boat out to secure their target.

He added: “If there is a need to make compromises to have him, we will do it.”

Lyon return a good option for Lacazette

Currently in their squad, Lyon have just Moussa Dembele and Tino Kadewere as centre-forwards. Therefore, getting Lacazette back would benefit the Ligue 1 club.

They will be without European football next season, which may give Lacazette something to reflect on. Some of his other suitors should be able to give him continental involvements.

Alternatively, he could be a piece of the puzzle they need to get back where they want. Besides, in the twilight of his career, perhaps not having to juggle multiple competitions will be beneficial.

And the emotional aspect of returning to Lyon could come into consideration too. Therefore, it would not be a surprise to see him back in Ligue 1 next season.

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