Arsenal-linked midfielder Jean Michael Seri will not leave Nice in January, according to president Jean-Pierre Rivere.

Seri was linked with a number of clubs over the summer, with Arsenal and Barcelona named as potential suitors, before the Catalan club reportedly pulled out of the deal.

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With Barcelona no longer in the running, Arsenal appeared to have a free run at the Ivorian. However the Gunners didn’t take that opportunity in the summer, and Nice’s president told France Blue Azur via talkSPORT that they won’t get an opportunity in January.

“Seri will not leave in January. I speak with the player a lot and there is no possible debate. He has a long-term contract.” The whole situation with Seri’s contract is a bit complicated.

First, it seemed pretty clear that he had a £36m release clause for anyone to trigger. Then the clause apparently “expired“, right after Barcelona pulled out of the deal.

After that, more information surfaced that apparently the clause never existed at all, it was just an agreement between the club and the player.

It seems as though the only thing we can be sure of is that there isn’t a release clause anymore, whether there was one originally or not. Therefore Arsenal would have to pay whatever amount Nice asked for to secure the services of the midfielder.

Either way, it doesn’t seem like that’s an option in January, so Arsenal will have to look elsewhere or make do with their current options.