Lyon look set to play hard ball with Arsenal should Arsene Wenger make a formal approach for midfielder Clement Grenier.
Comparing the 22-year-old’s playing style to no-chinned-mercenary Samir Nasri, the boss confirmed at the weekend that Arsenal’s scouts have been following Grenier’s progress throughout an impressive year in Ligue 1.
It is true that we follow him, I am impressed with his game intelligence,” Wenger told Telefoot. “He has very interesting qualities and reminds me a bit of Samir Nasri.”
Despite little suggestion that Grenier is on Wenger’s summer shopping list, the praise has drawn a bullish retort from Lyon chairman Jean Michel Aulas who is confident of keeping his player now that Lyon have secured a shot at qualifying for the Champions League in August.
“Clement said to me that he will give priority to Lyon if we qualify for the Champions League,” Aulas told Canal + when asked about interest from the Gunners.
“I prefer [to listen to] what he said, rather than what Arsene Wenger said. But, we have to make a financial effort to keep him. We will see after the level of our effort [that we have to do].
“If Arsene wants to have an idea of Grenier’s price, I will tell him that it is the same as what Bayern Munich paid for Mario Gotze – around €37 million.”
It’s pretty obvious that Grenier is not worth anywhere near Aulas’ proposed selling price but with the transfer window not even open yet in England it’s the type of peacocking you’d expect from a chairman looking to maximise his profits.
Whether Arsenal have an interest in the player or not only time will tell although Arseblog News suspects the boss was just being polite about his young compatriot. Polite in as backhanded a way as possible given the comparison…