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Yusuf Yazici ‘may have to leave’ former Ligue 1 champions Lille amid alleged interest from Premier League duo Fulham and Nottingham Forest, the club’s president Olivier Letang tells RTL France. 

After scoring eight goals in 10 league games on loan at CSKA Moscow last term, Turkey international Yazici might have assumed he would be returning to France this summer ready for a fresh start and a clean slate. 

So far, however, the 25-year-old has played just six minutes of Lille’s first two matches under Paulo Fonseca. And with Les Dogues hoping to trim the fat from a bloated squad, Yazici appears to be ripe for the chop. 

Nottingham Forest and Fulham held Yusuf Yazici talks

“We don’t want to have a squad of 25, 26, 27, 28 players. We need space and we want all the boys in the group – regardless of their age, their status – to have the opportunity to play,” explains former PSG chief Letang. 

“Today we may have one or two departures. I am thinking of boys like Yusuf Yazici and Isaac Lihadji. (They) may have to leave to find more playing time.  

“If we look at the squads at the top of the table last year, in all these clubs there were three or four players with high contributions. We are looking to see if we can improve in this area.” 

Earlier in the summer, Yazici’s agent claimed that both Nottingham Forest and Fulham had expressed an interest in his £12 million-rated client. The two Premier League newcomers, Adam Chebedzhi said, were ‘negotiating’ with Lille. 

Things have gone quiet since then, however. 

Nottingham Forest appear to have turned their attention to another goalscoring midfielder; Atalanta’s Ruslan Malinovskyi. Fulham, meanwhile, are prioritising wingers over an old-school, space-invading throwback of a number ten like Yazici. 

Justin Kluivert of Roma and veteran free-agent Willian could arrive at Craven Cottage in the coming days. 

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