‘Real shame’ – Arsenal legend Alan Smith reacts as Mikel Arteta fails in bid to sign Houssem Aouar

Mikel Arteta wanted Arsenal to sign Houssem Aouar from Lyon
Mikel Arteta wanted Arsenal to sign Houssem Aouar from Lyon (Pictures: Getty)

Alan Smith insists it is a ‘real shame’ that Arsenal and Mikel Arteta have seemingly failed in their bid to sign Houssem Aouar.

The Gunners identified the French midfielder as one of their top targets but Lyon claimed on Saturday that he would remain at the club beyond the summer transfer window.

Arsenal are now looking at alternative targets, with Chelsea star Jorginho a possibility for Arteta, who saw his team beat Sheffield United 2-1 on Sunday.

Asked which areas Arsenal could look to strengthen on transfer deadline day, Gunners hero Smith said before the Sheffield United win: ‘They have been linked with Aouar from Lyon for a while.

‘It sounds like that’s dead and that’s a real shame. He’s that creative player like Mesut Ozil was for a long time and Santi Cazorla was for a long time.

‘When you have Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette up front, you need good service.

Arteta's Arsenal beat Sheffield United on Sunday
Arteta’s Arsenal beat Sheffield United on Sunday (Picture: Getty)

‘A creative player is what they are missing. They have solid midfielders but lack a player with that vision.’

Meanwhile, Arteta provided an update on Arsenal’s transfer movements after the club beat Sheffield United 2-1.

He said: ‘What I can guarantee is that we are doing our maximum for that to happen. Whether we’re going to achieve it or not, I don’t know.

‘I cannot discuss the players that we want but we recognise some positions that we believe we are short, first of all in numbers and then different qualities to complement each other, this is what we’re trying to do.’

Goalscorer Bukayo Saka added on Arsenal’s win: ‘All the things that have happened to me. I feel blessed. I’m a happy man.

‘I am trying to do my best when the boss picks me. I try to repay the trust.

‘We gave so much credit to Sheffield United as they are a good side. We are happy to get the points.’

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