It does feel like Arsenal have put all of their efforts into signing Houssem Aouar this summer, so it will be interesting to see if they have any alternate plans in place.
It’s clear that Mikel Arteta wanted to add him to the squad and he looked like he would be a great signing, but reports from France have confirmed that he’s met with Lyon’s executives and the player himself confirmed that he will be staying there this season:
Breaking | Houssem Aouar has just come out of a meeting with the Lyon board & announced to the rest of the staff that he is staying at Lyon. This despite the offers from Arsenal & concrete interest from Juventus & PSG, he has decided to do another season with OL. (RMC)
— Get French Football News (@GFFN) October 3, 2020
It’s a double blow for Arsenal because it does leave their midfield looking a bit light this season, but it also gives other teams a chance to get their finances in order and you get the feeling there will be more competition to sign the Frenchman next summer.
It will also be interesting to see how this works out for Aouar because he has looked distracted when he’s played in the last couple of games, and a team digging their heels in and forcing someone to stay rarely works out well…
Further news has since emerged to suggest that Arsenal have given up on negotiations after being unable to agree a fee, so that should be the end of this story for now:
OL board have stopped negotiations with Arsenal for Houssem Aouar.#AFC made clear they won’t pay €50m + add ons [€60m total] asked by Aulas and OL told to Arsenal that the deal is over.
No Juventus, PSG or Real Madrid on last 2 days. Arsenal was the only chance. ?? #Aouar
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) October 3, 2020