Arsenal and Atletico de Madrid have agreed a swap deal for French players Alexandre Lacazette and Thomas Lemar, claims Thursday’s front page of Diario AS.
Lemar, 24, is no longer a regular in Diego Simeone’s side and has yet to score or register an assist to date this campaign – with multiple reports that he will be allowed to leave this month to free up wages.
In January, The Independent reported that their North London rivals Tottenham are willing to sanction a €6m loan offer and a €60m option-to-buy for the player, while also assuming his wages but no move came to fruition.
The France international became the club’s record signing – but has since been displaced by Joao Felix – when he joined the club from Monaco in the summer of 2018 in a €60m deal.
It has been reported that Atleti are operating at the maximum of their wage budget, meaning that they must sell before they can rejuvenate their squad.
In the summer of 2017, there was total agreement between Lacazette, Atletico and Olympique Lyonnais for the transfer but the deal never went through.
That was due to Atleti’s transfer ban at the time, which ensured that the striker instead moved to North London – where he has netted 45 goals in two and a half seasons since, spread across 114 appearances.
Despite a respectable goal return, it is thought that the striker has not filled his potential at the Gunners and this report claims Atleti have already sounded him out on several occasions.
Indeed, back in January Marca reported on interest from Diego Simeone’s side in the France international, although no move materialised.
There are long-term doubts over Diego Costa’s future in the Spanish capital and Lacazette could be a replacement.