Arsenal keep a close eye on 22-year-old France international

The London giants are unlikely to make a move for Houssem Aouar in the winter transfer window but could certainly return for the Lyon midfielder next summer, it has been claimed. The London giants had a bid of nearly £35m rejected for the midfielder last month.

The Gunners considered the prospect of making France international their seventh signing of the summer. But the Gunners could not broker a deal with tough-negotiating Lyon chief Jean-Michel Aulas for the 22-year-old midfielder in the final week of the window.

Ligue 1 club Lyon wanted nearer to £55m for Houssem, whose stock is only rising after earning his first cap for his country last week against Ukraine. And Gunners instead moved on to Atletico Madrid’s Thomas Partey at the end of the window, activating his £45m release clause on deadline day.

Mikel Arteta’s side, however, still lacks a more creative midfielder, particularly with Mesut Ozil in exile and set to depart at the end of his deal in 2021. That could lead them back to the French midfielder in the next few windows as they seek to build a side capable of challenging for domestic and European silverware.

Given the money they would need to commit to a deal, the Gunners are unlikely to revisit their interest until the summer of 2021.