Arsenal not aggressive enough in pursuit of European ace

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Arsenal spent the summer linked with Lyon midfielder Houssem Aouar.

The midfielder is clearly an excellent young player who has made a real impact in Ligue 1; he has made 145 appearances for Lyon, scoring 26 goals and registering 28 assists.

A smart midfield player with the ability to split defences and go box-to-box, it seemed that he could be on his way to England.

The Guardian reported in the summer that an offer of around £35m was tabled for the midfielder but rejected.

Indeed, Jean-Michel Aulas, the club’s president, confirmed on Twitter that the offer was too far from Aouar’s value to be accepted.

However, it now seems that that rejection, and the inability of the two clubs to agree a fee, has taken a toll on the player.

Sport Witness carries a report from L’Equipe claiming that Aouar is set to be punished for failing to join a warm-down session after the win over Angers.

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He is said to be frustrated that no firm offer was made for him in the summer, as he dreamed of moving to a major European team.

The Gunners get a mention, with the newspaper claiming they were too timid in their bid to sign the star.

He will need to get back to his best form if he is to have any chance of sealing a move in a future transfer window; this season he has scored twice and laid on one assist.

GIVEMESPORT’S Harry Sherlock says…

Arsenal signed Thomas Partey in the end but one has to think there is still room for Aouar in the squad.

Per WhoScored, the 22-year-old averaged 1.8 shots per game last season, along with one key pass, 2.6 dribbles, and a pass success rate of 84.1%.

He is a forward-thinking midfielder who can split defences apart and look to drive towards goal.

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This season, the Gunners have found goals hard to come by – they have scored nine goals in eight games – and bringing Aouar in would go a long way to solving the problem of their lack of creativity.

They should go in with a firmer offer as soon as possible.

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