Arsenal were very interested in signing Houssem Aouar from Olympique Lyon this summer but the Gunners weren’t interested in a bidding war. The 22-year-old France international emerged as one of the hottest players on the market with interest from Real Madrid and Juventus. Lyon was aware of the interest and tried to use that to receive the highest possible transfer fee for Aouar.
At the end of the window Arsenal were the only club that wanted to make a deal with Lyon. While Juve and Madrid are still very interested, they both lacked the funds to make an offer. Arsenal hoped Aouar would have been available for a €40m transfer fee but Lyon decided to increase their asking price up to at least €60m. Arsenal then decided to pull the plug on the deal.
Instead Arsenal decided to land Thomas Partey from Atletico Madrid. The Gunners triggered the Ghanaian’s release clause and managed to land the midfielder for €45m. Despite rejecting the asking price set by Lyon, Arsenal remain interested in Aouar and could be tempted to try a new move during the January transfer window.