Arsenal joined move for French No.8 midfielder valued at £54m

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Lyon playmaker Houssem Aouar has reportedly been shortlisted as a surprise transfer target for Arsenal and hosts of European teams.

Despite his status at the Ligue 1 giants, the 22-year-old midfielder may be allowed to depart from the club this summer if his team fail to secure the spot in the Champions League next season and it is capable only by winning Europe’s most elite competition this year.

That scenario has been created due to the financial implications of the coronavirus pandemic and Lyon missing out on European qualification through France’s top flight.

According to L’Equipe, the Citizens head-coach Pep Guardiola is a huge fan of the 22-year-old midfielder’s talent, who has been valued at £54m by Lyon.

However, City may prioritise other areas of the pitch this summer, leaving Arsenal and Juventus as the main favourites to secure the services of Frenchman.

Aouar will hope to impress when Lyon faces Manchester City in the Champions League last 1/8 on Friday night.

Meanwhile, Atletico Madrid have reportedly reiterated that they will not sell their star player Thomas Partey unless Arsenal agrees to pay his €50million (£45.5m) release clause.

The Ghana international is believed to be one of three attacking players Mikel Arteta is targeting in the summer along with Barcelona midfielder Philippe Coutinho and soon-to-be free agent Willian from their rivals Chelsea.

The Gunners opened talks with Thomas Partey earlier this year, as confirmed by his father, however, any hopes of signing the 27-year-old anchorman on a cut-price transfer have been dashed by Atletico.