Arsenal step up Houssem Aouar transfer with Lyon star wanting Premier League move as Man City join race for £55m ace

ARSENAL reportedly face competition from Manchester City in the race to prise Houssem Aouar away from Lyon this summer.

The 22-year-old has already been the subject of a player-plus-cash deal from the Gunners, but the offer was swiftly rejected by the Ligue 1 outfit.

Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain have also been linked with a move for Aouar, but a switch to the Premier League is believed to be his priority.

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Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano has stated that the North London side remain keen on bringing him to the Emirates.

He has revealed that the Arsenal board are huge fans of the player, but as of yet, no new bid is on the table.

He tweeted: "Arsenal board [as Arteta too] are convinced that Houssem Aouar is a real ‘top player’.

"And Aouar would love to move to Premier League. But after refusing Guendouzi as part of the negotiation, OL don’t want to accept any swap deal.

"Price tag €60m (£55m) and no new bid yet from #AFC."

According to the Mirror, Pep Guardiola is a huge admirer of the playmaker who was instrumental in Lyon's Champions League semi-final run.

And Pep will now battle his former assistant manager Mikel Arteta in the race to secure his services.

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Commenting on the player's future, Lyon's sporting director Juninho said: "I get on very well with [Arsenal technical director] Edu, we spoke on the phone.

"Aouar is really appreciated by Mikel Arteta. Guendouzi was discussed during the call, he is a great player, but he is the wrong profile.

"We are not interested in that at all, we cut the conversation.”

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