Arsenal have gone £4million short of Lyon’s asking price after making their opening transfer bid for midfielder Houssem Aouar, a report claims.
Gunners boss Mikel Arteta reportedly wants a squad overhaul this summer to steer his club back in the right direction. Following an eighth-placed Premier League finish, the club need to do work to address key issues. In defence, Brighton’s Ben White remains the top target, while Arsenal also want a new back-up goalkeeper.
However, midfield is the area which will require the biggest changes. Arsenal are close to sealing the arrival of Anderlecht’s Albert Sambi Lokonga, but Arteta wants more.
Indeed, he wants an attacking midfielder in the shape of Lyon’s Aouar to add goals and assists from deeper. The Gunners wanted him last summer, but did not want to fork out his £55million price tag.
Previous reports have claimed that Arsenal have confidence in completing a deal for £20million this time around.
Now, Le10 Sport claims that Arsenal have gone in with an opening gambit of £17million.
Lyon, though, want closer to €25million (£21.3million). That has allowed north London rivals Tottenham, who also have interest in Aouar, to consider a move.
The French outlet adds that Spurs – led by transfer chief Fabio Paratici – undoubtedly have more resources and the ability to offer more money.
As such, while Arsenal have led the race for Aouar for some time, Tottenham could easily turn the tables.
In any case, Lyon ‘are selling’, Le10 Sport adds. While manager Peter Bosz would love to keep his star midfielder, Lyon cannot afford to turn down a suitable offer once it arrives.
Arsenal overcome transfer hurdle
Arsenal will have to fund new signings from key squad sales, such as Granit Xhaka.
Roma boss Jose Mourinho has made him a firm transfer target, but the fee for the midfielder is proving a stumbling block – especially following his Euro 2020 displays for Switzerland.
However, the latest report claims that the two clubs have reached a compromise.