French outfit Olympique Lyonnais were at one point the financial powerhouses of Ligue 1 football. However with the continued struggles over the building of a new stadium the club has not been able to keep up with the likes of Paris Saint-Germain or AS Monaco with their wealthy foreign investors.
That has led to many a player being linked with a move away from the Stade Gerland this summer one of which has been club captain and French international Maxime Gonalons.
The 24-year-old defensive midfielder has been linked with £10 million moves to both Napoli and Monaco in the past month while Arsenal are also said to hold a vested interest in the player.
Current Lyon coach, and himself a former Arsenal player, Remi Garde made it clear that he was not for sale at the end of May stating:
"There are stories about some players leaving the club. The last few years we have won the Coupe de France and finished third in the league. Am I keen to accept the transfer of Gonalons and Grenier? No, because they are exactly in our project and I want to build the team around them.''
But the general consensus is that Gonalons could indeed be after a move; and at the end of the day it is not Garde’s decision whether he stays.
That responsibility lies with the club president Jean-Michel Aulas; and if he decides it is in the best interests of the club to let Gonalons leave then Gonalons is likely to leave.
But Arsenal fans I am afraid that Aulas has made his feelings clear on his potential departure; and is adamant he will not be going anywhere.
When answering a question from a fan of the club he categorically denied the idea via his official Twitter account yesterday.
When responding to whether Gonalons could be sold for €15 million Aulas was in short shrift with his response of simply ‘Max never!’
Seems Gonalons is going nowhere soon…
image: © Howard Lake