Monday, July 15, 2024

Monaco: Arsenal were close to finalising Lemar deal

Monaco accept that Thomas Lemar could leave the club at the end of the season having only just held onto the attacking midfielder during the summer.

Arsenal and Liverpool went head-to-head in the final days of the transfer window for the France international with the Gunners tabling a bid in the region of £90 million as they looked for a possible Alexis Sanchez replacement.

Looking to the future, Vadim Vasilyev, Monaco’s vice-president, confirmed that the in-demand 21-year-old could still leave the Stade Louis II.

“Liverpool were really interested,” Vasilyev told Sky Sports News. “But it was Arsenal that was really close to finalising the deal.

“It was quite close. At the same time it was just too late, not enough time, to really follow up on this deal. Not all the elements of the puzzle fell in place. I’m very happy he stayed with us. For us, we need a player like Thomas Lemar. He’s very important to our team.

“Definitely next summer will be something to look at, although you know in football there are no guarantees. We had some players who were supposed to leave this summer but didn’t leave because of X, Y, Z. I think it would be fair to say Thomas will have a fair chance to an exit next year.”

With clubs already eyeing the January transfer window, the Russian accepted that Monaco’s desire to keep the player could well be tested again.

“January, in football, never say never, but this is not what we’re thinking of, this is really not in our plans.

“Then we have to wait and see, how the team does, in different competitions, if we have an interest in him, and also his ambitions after the World Cup. January doesn’t seem like the right time for major changes in the team.”

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Well he’s fluttering his eyelids and whistling at Arsenal to come back in for him, which I’ll be over the moon with.

Bould\'s Eyeliner

More like if Arsenal went balls deep in negotiations (we never do), we would’ve gotten Lemar. Now we’ll have to pay even more–thats what this pr is about. Hopefully we just buy him this time in June. Crazy thing this market…


Yeah its a joke – Blaise Matuidi goes to Juventus for like a tenner.

Mein Bergkampf

Wouldn’t you be? English clubs are just getting the piss taken out of them on the continent. They made 150m from Citeh and Chelsea and replaced them them with three players that totalled under 50m. Lemar is a good, promising youngster but 90m is fucking crazy. And Monaco know it.

SB Still

That’s why I think us trying increase our bid £5M at a time, maybe we could have got him for £55M or £60M before the Neymar deal.

That one deal inflated the whole market massively. There is no other market that inflates so much, that it doesn’t make sense to keep the money and wait.

Lemar will now cost £100M+


The amount EPL clubs make from TV rights is fucking crazy. I like how Kroenke just assumes he can make off like a bandit with that revenue. Like no club that we try to buy from will ever notice that poor little Arsenal could bailout a country if it wanted to.


Keita diao was available for 30m curious why there was no link with him


Cause he’s shite


Since then he hasn’t done much for his club and for his national team. Nothing worth this amount.


Because the team was gutted, you think Ozil would play well at Bournemouth?

Dial square

Should have upped the bid by £1, honestly supporting this club is like being constantly kicked in the nuts….love them to bits though.


Sure. Rub salt on it.

Kostas Greek Gooner

Lets add him to the endless “wonderkids-that-almost-signed-for-us” list…

Lord Bendnter

Let’s give Monaco a call at 11pm, one hour before next summer Transfer Window closes, on the availability of Lemar


You may recall arsenal had multiple bids rejected by Monaco earlier in the window and were told plain and simple that he was not going to be sold this summer. The amounts on offer were quite aggressive at the time for a player so earlier in his career and only one year of evidence to judge. It wasn’t until the crazy inflation from Mbappe and Neymar sales closed that Monaco came back and said they were willing to do business if Arsenal threw out a crazy bid. Of which arsenal did throw out a crazy offer, and it was accepted.… Read more »

Lord Bendnter

I can’t swallow down that other clubs managed to capture Monaco players, while we couldn’t get Lemar. I think it was an inflated transfer window well before Mbappe or Neymar deals, and we might not have been willing to give in. So while we might not have budged, other clubs completed their transfer businesses with Monaco. I think that after the Mbappe transfer, Monaco jacked up Lemar’s price even more. So maybe our negotiating was not up to par, despite the inflated window, from the start of the transfer window.


Monaco players are/were not all one homogeneous hive entity. Different players carried different values. If you look at sites tracking perceived market value, the likes of Bakayoko and Mendy simply weren’t considered particularly high value until Chelsea and Manchester City expressed an interest at the beginning of this Summer. Mendy was injured for a big portion of last season and seems to have had persistent injury problems over the past few years. Whereas Lemar’s perceived value was already pretty high the previous Summer and had advanced considerably further by January. Bernardo Silva was probably about as highly rated as Lemar,… Read more »

Dave M

I can’t swallow this BS of Arsenal doing things “more respectfully than other clubs”. Arsenal are one of the “Big 6” trying to squeeze more money out of foreign TV revenue over the existing revenue sharing more – meaning we are trying to be the same as Barca and Real. Arsenal are the club that charge the highest home game ticket prices across Europe. And there is evidence of Arsene have meetings with Mbappe and a whole host of other players before agreements. If being respectful is pocking boat loads of coin for old white men then Arsenal is the… Read more »

Crash Fistfight

Could you stop referring to “old white men” please? Does it make it ok if money grabbing is done by other demographics?

Dave M

Sorry, I guess Josh Kroenke isn’t exactly old…


Exactly, it’s blatant racism and sexism

Dave M

lol…Blatant racism and sexism is when a white man calls out that a club run almost entirely by old white men interested in making themselves rich at the by scrapping real football ambition is “blatant racism and sexism”
#WhiteMalePrivilege is alive and well with you guys. Hilarious! #TheUntouchables


May I remind you that Arsene had meetings with Mbappe with the blessing of the club. He didn’t do it behind their back because if he did, he wouldn’t publicly declare that we almost bought him last summer – please get your facts straight before saying things that aren’t true. Yes the most honest and honourable groups don’t get some fantastic players but Arsenal are known for doing things the right way and won’t tap up players. Also, I don’t see anything bad in trying to make more money, as long as it’s not in a wrong way

Dave M

Yes because Stan Kroenke earn his money the right way…right!?!

Dave M

“It was quite close. At the same time it was just too late, not enough time, to really follow up on this deal.”

So, so Arsenally…

I’d love him to come, but you just know one of the Manchesters, Chel$ki, or Real or Barca are going to snipe him now. And then in a few years we’ll have Wenger saying “With Lemar we were very close, just little bit not enough time to complete it. We always rated him very highly”


We can probably blame City’s late Alexis bid for a healthy portion of this tardiness. They chose to play games pulling him late leaving us with no replacement, or cynically turning his head last minute to affect Alexis and morale.


@mpls – come on. we had literally all summer to sign Lemar & almost assuredly could have done it for far less than 90m if we had done it earlier in the summer before Monaco had sold everyone else. We are the ones who chose to spend the entire summer saying that Sanchez wasn’t for sale & did not attempt to replace him beforehand. worst case we would have had lemar and sanchez for a year. this is totally on arsenal

Dave M

Here here @Atom…Arsenal totally effed up this whole situation, not Monaco, not Lemar, not Sanchez. If we had of signed a world class dominant DM, an attacker like LeMar and a striker the summer before we would already have Alexis and Ozil signed up. Instead we got another central midfielder and tried to make him a DM, bandaged up out other wide position with theo and the Ox, and slowed everything down to fit Giroud into the team when the players we have demand a high tempo game (said it 1000x Ozil is one of the worlds best counter attacking… Read more »


If Arsenal was in the market for a World Class DM, please name some that were available that are world class?

I agree we should have signed an attacker during the summer ’15 or ’16 but really ’15 because we were building good momentum with the post stadium debt era.

Who cares if you spend the whole summer saying Alexis or Ox isn’t for sale and then try to unload them at the end? Isn’t that the same thing Monaco did with Lemar??

Dave M

Who is in the last year of their contract? Lemar or Alexis?

Why wait all Summer saying no then say yes and then finally get agressive in the Lemar chase. This could have all been done before if that was the plan. If keeping him was the plan then stick to it. Don’t back out (like always) and cause an even bigger farce than letting your two best players run their contracts down has already created.

DMs: Kondogbia, Grzegorz Krychowiak, Matic, Carvalho, Kante, Seri, Illarramendi, Matuidi…there is a few. All have moved around or could have been bought.


It doesn’t matter if someone has just signed a 5 year contract or in their last year. If we use your reasoning then everyone should have known Alexis was for sale regardless since he was in his last year. A club like PSG or City should have been pursuing regardless what AW said about Alexis. Besides that like you said AW does this all the time in last few years so why would any of these clubs take his word that they weren’t for sale? You can’t have it both ways. Like you said since anyone can be bought. Hence… Read more »

Dave M

It does matter what year of the contract they are in because its a matter of losing them for nothing or making money. Forced to sell or forced to take the hit. With a massive contract on board the worst that can happen is a massive transfer fee. PSG and Man City pursued Alexis all summer. Were you under a rock? We stone walled them, then we caved in and the farce rolled out. Monaco played hard ball because they didn’t need the money due to other sales so forced the price up. We got played like a drum only… Read more »


PSG and ManC both backed off after the initial interest because AW wasn’t going to sell. Until the end when ManC finally upped their offer and AW finally had to funds to go after Lemar with those funds. Exactly Monaco didn’t need to sell. They could wait another year or 2 for Lemar to get even better and sell at a bigger price later. The whole market got screwed once Neymar actually transferred out. Mbappe was overpriced even though he potentially is a great player. Why do you want to pay double the price when you know he isn’t worth… Read more »


“in a few years” I really really really hope Wenger has retired, at least not here anymore..



Mein Bergkampf

Well you’d make a useless suicide prevention ambassador…


Martial I think has one year left on his deal next summer?
If United sign Griezmann?
We should be all over it.
Quality player… and having United educate a player for us to reap the benefits, would be ohhh so sweeet.

Mein Bergkampf

And what an education they gave Mikael Silvestre…

Make Arsenal Great Again

I’ll rather sign Griezmann. Although I think Martial will come good


Honestly, i don’t understand why clubs fear United. They finished below us in the league last year and i’m pretty sure they will finish below us this year. As much as i hate to say it i personally rate Tottenham more than United.
I don’t see Griezmann to United happening. The only chance of that happening is if Mourinho gets sacked and is replaced by Simione.


He was heading to United this summer until Atletico’s transfer ban.


Who don’t know that lol


You sound like a fan of every other top club besides Arsenal lol


I don’t rate him anyway. Let’s keep Sanchez fingers crossed!

Dave M

Well I mean if you don’t rate him Paul, he must be rubbish. Let’s not sign him

Ted E.

Agreed. I was very excited about his prospects, until I learned that Paul does not rate him. Seems we got away with one there.

Mein Bergkampf

I wish you’d told us this at the beginning of the window Paul. Could’ve saved me a whole summer of frustration.


Stick it to the man, Paul!

He\'s got no hair but we don\'t care...

Just a delightful reminder that we left it staggeringly late to do a deal of that magnitude. Fools.

Andy Mack

Weren’t we initially told he wasn’t available, and then at the last moment $iteh put a bid in so we’d have a space in our ’25’, we asked again and then we were told there wasn’t enough time…
Maybe if $iteh had put a bid in a week earlier then the deal would have happened…

Andy Mack

*$iteh put a bid in for Alexis, obviously!

Central Fullbacks

“It was quite close. At the same time it was just too late, not enough time, to really follow up on this deal.”

So basically, we could’ve had Lemar. Playing for us right now, maybe even have been in the top 3, had he played.. if we’d just you know.. Bid a few days earlier instead of being stingy panicky c_nts..

#wengerknowsbest #wengerout


How much did Silva go for to City? 40m?He was rated higher than Lemar at Monaco last year. It’s a case of captain hindsight, but could we not have bid 40m plus the day the transfer window opened, probably would have got him. Sigh


Sell Sanchez to City and get Lemar in January, its the only sane solution.

Me So Hornsey

I don’t think we’d get Sane to be honest, although it’d be great.


Would be a great signing next summer. I think though that we need more creativity in the market. With fees how they are why can’t we do things like Leicester or Swansea getting big name players on loan. Or how Bayern got James on loan. I know AW likes to pinpoint his signings and doesn’t like to compromise. But if this season goes off the rails – an injury to either Ramsey or Xhaha would be very difficult to cope with – it’s down to his indecisiveness.

Untactic Wenger

My two cents on the matter is that Arsenal very much wanted to get Thomas Lemar very early in the transfer window but they could only get him if : a) his transfer price was significantly lower than 90 million or b) Sanchez was sold and the cash from the sale was added up to already available cash. To assume that Arsenal can afford to pay ? 90 for Lemar is fanciful thinking.Maybe if Kroenke put in his own money, we would afford to buy players at any price. However any chance of that happening with two shareholders is again… Read more »

Dave M

Yes, broke club. Poor poor Arsenal. Maybe if the ambition had something to do with football and not hunting expeditions for ivory back scratchers


How about we trade them a Chilean who is desperate to leave us? He’s a good player with a positive attitude even when his team loses as is evident by how often he smiles in the face of defeat. A bit grumpy when he’s subbed but never rusty because he never stops playing even during summer breaks.

Have him plus a few mil on top!


I think Lemar was strictly to bring in more option at fullback (particularly left wingback)

That said, he is incredibly expensive.

If we can do a swap/make weight deal with PSG for Draxler or Pastore with one of our wantaway big names, the better.

Trex d\' Gunner

We really messed things up big time, dilly dallying on someone we obviously need

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