Arsenal remain very much in contention to sign Tottenham target Houssem Aouar after Lyon reportedly changed their terms over the midfielder’s exit this summer.
Aouar was a major target for Arsenal last summer as they looked to revamp their midfield. Ultimately, he stayed with Lyon, while Thomas Partey was the player who arrived at Emirates Stadium. Since then, Arsenal have signed Martin Odegaard on a permanent deal after he impressed on loan.
That was expected to signal the end of their interest in Aouar. Indeed, Tottenham have looked the Premier League side most likely to sign the France midfielder. As such, reports earlier this week claimed their efforts to orchestrate a swap deal had failed.
However, the Daily Mirror reports that Arsenal’s efforts to sign Aouar are still ongoing. And their cause has seemingly been helped by a major shift at the Ligue 1 club.
Having valued Aouar at £50m last summer, Lyon were reported to have halved their asking price for the 23-year-old this summer.
But with no takers coming forwards, Get French Football News now claims Lyon are willing to accept a loan approach. They claim that any deal would need to contain an obligation-to-buy for summer 2022. But it’s a proposal Lyon are now willing to entertain in order to get Aouar off their books.
As per the article, they want to rid themselves of the player’s high wages. Furthermore, there have been claims about discplinary issues during last season, allegations the player has denied.
And that appears to have stirred Arsenal back into life as far as Aouar is concerned.
The Gunners are actively trying to move a number of players on before the window shuts. Indeed, the Evening Standard claims Willian, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Eddie Nketiah, Hector Bellerin, Lucas Torreira, Reiss Nelson and Sead Kolasinac could all depart in the next week.
Willian father outlines Arsenal agony
Willian has two years left on his Arsenal deal worth £100,000 a week. As such, he’ll need to take a dramatic pay-cut to secure his reported return to Corinthians.
However, speaking to Arena SBT (via Sport Witness), the player’s father has suggested the move now looks his best option.
“There are things that money doesn’t buy. Playing for Corinthians is priceless. Today, they could afford. Corinthians are cleaning up the squad and two, three players who leave already pay for it. And because William would come for free,” he said.
“He’s really not happy, otherwise he wouldn’t want to leave. He has proposals from Europe, but it’s no secret that we want him to end his career at Corinthians. Today, everything depends on Corinthians making the proposal and Arsenal releasing him.
“If it depended on my taste, he’d go back to Corinthians, wear the 10! But he’s a professional, and he knows about his career.”
In addition an article on Globo Esporte claims Willian is ‘irritated’ by Arteta’s decision to freeze him out. Furthermore, a chat between Willian and Arsenal technical director Edu has convinced him to leave.
They say the chat ‘exposed a series of dissatisfactions with the club’s sports project that motivated him to ask to leave’.