Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has offered Arsenal hope of signing Houssem Aouar, setting a deadline of Friday evening for any departures and admitting the club may ‘lose two players’ before then.
Mikel Arteta is pursuit of a central midfielder to bolster his options in the middle of the park, an area in which the north London club have been light in recent years.
The Gunners have already had two bids for Aouar turned down, with the latest said to be a £32 million offer.
Lyon are believed to be holding out for a fee in the region of £46m for their star midfielder who propelled them to the Champions League semi-finals last season.
Aouar, Memphis Depay and former Arsenal midfielder Jeff Reine-Adelaide have all been linked with moves away from the club, and Aulas admitted two players could leave before Friday evening.
Speaking at a press conference for the announcement of new midfield signing Lucas Paqueta from AC Milan on Wednesday, Aulas said: ‘From Friday evening, when Rudi [Garcia] will choose his squad vs Marseille, there will be no departures.
‘We could see ourselves lose two players.’
Aulas confirmed that three top clubs are keen on their star midfielder, but reiterated none of them have matched Lyon’s valuation as of yet.
‘We know that three big clubs are interested in him, two in the short-term, 1 in the long-term,’ he added.
‘Not much has happened. All the clubs can’t give us financially what Lyon wants.’