Arsenal handed boost in chase for Lyon midfielder Houssem Aoaur
Lyon appear to have signed a replacement
Arsenal have been handed a major boost in their pursuit of Houssem Aouar, as Lyon appear to have wrapped up a deal for a replacement.
Transfer insider Fabrizio Romano has reported that a deal has been agreed between AC Milan and Lyon for the transfer of midfield playmaker Lucas Paqueta, while Arsenal continue their negotiations for Aouar.
Olympique Lyonnays have reached an agreement with AC Milan to sign Lucas Paquetá! Deal almost done, last details to be completed soon.
...and Arsenal are still pushing to sign Aouar from OL [talks on also today, no agreement yet ⚪️🔴]. 🇧🇷 #AFC #Arsenal @SkySport @PeppeDiSte
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) September 29, 2020
Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has confirmed they have received a bid from Arsenal but described it as timid.
“There was a timid offer, it was not an offer that was even susceptible to making us consider a sale," he said.
When asked how much money Lyon would demand for the 22-year-old, Aulas suggested that anything more than €40m would get the ball rolling.
JM Aulas about Aouar #Arsenal deal: “There was a timid offer, it was not an offer that was even susceptible to making us consider a sale”.
How much you want? €40m, €50m?
“More than the first number that you mentioned...”. [@GFFN].#AFC are still in contact with his agent. ⚪️🔴
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) September 28, 2020
Arsenal's need for a new central midfielder has been laid bear in recent weeks, as Mohamed Elneny has walked back into the team after a loan spell at Besiktas last season.
Dani Ceballos and Granit Xhaka have played well together but if Arsenal want to build on the progress they have made so far under Mikel Arteta, a more dominant, creative midfielder is a must and Aouar would fit the bill.
Aouar's performances in the Champions League for Lyon caught the attention of many clubs across the continent, with Juventus making a formal approach today, according to RMC in France.
But Arsenal look most likely to win the race for his signature at the moment.