Having missed out on Hungarian playmaker – Dominik Szoboszlai, Arsenal are reportedly returning their sights back to a familiar face, Lyon and France international – Houssem Aouar.
After chasing the central-midfielder all summer, Edu and the Arsenal board will hope to wrap up a deal and pick up where they left off in the upcoming January transfer window. Their interest was a badly-kept secret, with all French and English media outlets reporting on the deal throughout the entire summer window, only for it to fall through at the last minute.
Arsenal were at the front of the queue despite the likes of PSG, Juventus, Real Madrid and Manchester City all displaying firm interest, (which never led to anything concrete due to the financial crisis and lack of funds for these top clubs). This led to a ‘free-run’ at Aouar for Arsenal, with the majority of reliable sources reporting that Arsenal had a deal and personal terms sorted out with Aouar himself as well as eventually finding a compromise over the fee with Lyon, (a reported fee of €50m); the French midfielder’s brother was reported to have ‘sabotaged the deal, as he wanted a larger chunk of the fee as an agent’s fee’. Said fee’ was said to have put the Arsenal negotiators off, and they walked away from the table.
Aouar's proposed move to Arsenal collapsed this summer, with the player's agent largely to blame. Brahim Aouar asked for a large commission for his brother to sign for Arsenal. He had his heart set on a move to Arsenal but the club could not agree terms. [@LaurensJulien @ESPNFC]
— Z (@ZRAFC) October 9, 2020
However, the new transfer window is looking promising. Having displayed interest in RB Salzburg’s Dominik Szoboszlai, the club were too slow to act; and Szoboszlai joined RB Leipzig instead.
With Edu coming out in the press, and also publicly saying:
‘Of course, we are looking for a creative player. It is a problem at the moment, but yes, we are looking.’
With Arsenal’s public interest in Houssem Aouar, if you consider the fact that the initial deal fell-through over ‘agent-fees’, then you’d expect only one hurdle in the way of a January transfer for Arsenal and Aouar. The fee is not looking a problem as such, with personal terms agreed, and the player’s family all reportedly behind the move – but it’s not necessarily up to Arsenal at the end of the day. It depends how desperate Arsenal are for Aouar: will they cough up the large agent fees? or will Auoar’s brother/agent reconsider his demands?
Whatever happens, you can expect to see the saga reignite prior to, and during the January window. With Arsenal severely lacking creativity, you’d expect them to do whatever they can to ensure their No.1 target in January – Houssem Aouar – doesn’t slip through the net again.
What is certain though, is that Houssem Aouar would add a new dimension to this one-dimensional Arsenal side – who sit 15th place in mid-December. He would instantly be adding another outlet of spark and creativity and hopefully, he can change the miserable Arsenal fortunes and become a gamechanger – as Fernandes did for Manchester United this time last year.
An article by Ibrahim – HaleEndArsenal on Twitter.