The French star is considered to be one of the most promising young midfielders in Europe and was might impressive for Les Gones in the recent past, particularly in the UEFA Champions League. Aouar was at the heart of Lyon's creative prowess as the French club powered their way to the semi-final of the competition last year.
Arsenal are said to be keen on Aouar and have tracked his progress for quite some time now. If reports are to be believed, they could be edging closer to a move for their priority midfield target.
Lyon open to sanctioning Aouar's Arsenal move, have replacement lined up
As per Italian outlet Calciomercato, Lyon are open to allow Aouar to move to Arsenal his summer although they are not under any pressure to sell their star man. The 22-year-old has also been linked with moves to the likes of Manchester City, Juventus, and other top clubs this summer.
However, it appears that Arsenal are in pole position to land him this summer as Mikel Arteta is keen on revamping his squad. Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano also confirmed that the Gunners have initiated contact with Aouar's agents in recent weeks, and that the midfielder himself is very much keen on a move to North London.
The report also claims that Lyon have already earmarked a potential replacement for Aouar — Lucas Paqueta of AC Milan — should their star midfielder leave the club this summer. Paqueta, a 23-year-old Brazilian creative midfielder, managed just 12 starts last year in Serie A and could be open to a move. The former Flamengo starlet is valued at around £25m by the Rossoneri.
Apart from Aouar, Arsenal are also interested to sign Thomas Partey of Atletico Madrid, who reportedly has a release clause of €50m in his current contract at the Wanda Metropolitano.
Despite these relatively positive reports, Jean-Michel Aulas remains optimistic of keeping his prized asset this summer. When asked about Arsenal's interest in Aouar, the 71-year-old Lyon chief explained;
"No, I don't think so [Arsenal signing Aouar]. There is no offer yet. It seems that Arsenal don't want to, or can't invest the price for Houssem [Aouar], who is our [Lyon's] best player."
Lyon's sporting director Juninho also confirmed talks between the UCL semi-finalists and Arsenal over a potential transfer of Matteo Guendouzi. The former Brazilian international said;
"I get on very well with the [Arsenal] Sporting Director [Edu]. We spoke on the phone. Houssem Aouar is really well liked by [Mikel] Arteta. There were some discussions for Mattéo Guendouzi, who is also a good player. He was brought up during the discussion."
With the transfer window open until October 5th, it remains to be seen if Aouar does move to the Emirates Stadium this summer.
Published 19 Sep 2020, 21:30 IST