Jeff Reine-Adelaide says things were complicated for him at Arsenal, and it was the best thing for him to move on.
Reine-Adelaide left the Gunners for Ligue 1 side Angers last summer, before making the step up to Olympique Lyonnais this year.
An impressive set of performances at the summer’s u21 European Championships earned the 21-year-old a lot of attention in France, with AS Monaco bidding €30m and Lyon offering €25m excluding bonuses. Reine-Adelaide chose Lyon, believing it to be the best club for him.
“I was especially glad to see that a lot of clubs wanted me, including Monaco, who played in the Champions League not so long ago,” Reine-Adelaide told L’Equipe.
“But I felt that it was better to sign to Lyon. I feel ready to succeed in this club, who fights for titles in all the national competitions.”
L’Equipe pointed out to Reine-Adelaide that his career had gone in a bit of a circle over the last few years. He started playing with Arsenal, a Champions League club at the time, before dropping down to a lower level just to bounce back up to another Champions League side.
The former Gunner responded by explaining that things had become difficult for him in North London, and he needed to take a step back to progress in the long term.
“We will say that Arsenal, it was a bit complicated. I got there young, there was a lot of competition and I had to learn. I wanted to go somewhere else to get game time (in Angers) and it turns out that it was a profitable decision, given where I am now.”
Reine-Adelaide made a fairly low-profile debut for Lyon in a draw against Bordeaux last week, but he’ll have another chance to impress against Amiens next Friday before the Champions League fixtures get underway.