Arsenal target Houssem Aouar looking elsewhere after being left ‘surprised’ by Gunners

Paris Saint-Germain v Olympique Lyon - Ligue 1
Houssem Aouar is exploring his options (Photo by Xavier Laine/Getty Images)

Lyon playmaker Houssem Aouar will wait to see if interest from Real Madrid or Barcelona materialises into a firm offer this summer before making a final decision on a move to Arsenal.

The Frenchman was the source of intense interest from the Gunners last summer but the club’s bid of around £31m was rejected by the Ligue 1 giants, who were seeking closer to £55m.

Aouar was keen on leaving Lyon but ESPN claim he was ‘surprised’ by the lack of concrete interest from Arsenal, who were well positioned to sign the midfielder given the financial effect of the pandemic on many top clubs around Europe last summer.

The playmaker is not ruling out a move to the Emirates this summer but he will first wait to see if the interest in his services is greater at the end of the season compared to last.

Aouar is valued at £55m (Photo by Valery HACHE / AFP) (Photo by VALERY HACHE/AFP via Getty Images)

Barcelona and Real Madrid have both heavily scouted the midfielder in the last 18 months and Aouar is keen to see if the Spanish giants front up their interest with a firm offer at the end of the season.

Though Aouar will have two years left on his deal by the summer, Lyon are likely to demand the same fee for the France international in the summer as the level of interest in him is likely to be greater this time around.

Lyon are unwilling to allow the midfielder to leave this month and Arsenal are not in a position to meet the asking price on demand from the Ligue 1 giants.

The Gunners recently took advantage of a government loan scheme to avoid a cashflow problem and the £120m has to be paid back this summer.

The departures of Mesut Ozil and Sokratis will free up significant cash on the Gunners’ wage bill, however, and Arteta is expected to be given funds this summer to reinvest in the side.

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