Jeff Reine-Adelaide says it’s difficult to imagine his future playing at Lyon and he’s now searching for a new footballing project as Rennes bid €23m for the former Arsenal man.

France's midfielder Jeff Reine-Adelaide (L) fights for the ball with Denmark's midfielder Mathias Jensen during the friendly U21 football match between France and Denmark on March 24, 2019 at the Francis Le Ble stadium in Brest, western France. (Photo by Fred TANNEAU / AFP / Getty Images)
France u21 midfielder Jeff Reine-Adelaide (L) fights for the ball on March 24, 2019. (Photo by Fred TANNEAU / AFP / Getty Images)

Reine-Adelaide left Arsenal for Angers on a permanent deal in 2018, before moving onto Lyon the following summer. He impressed in his first full season in Ligue 1, as well as in the u21 European Championships, causing Lyon to splash out €25m on him.

The former Gunner’s first year with his new club didn’t entirely go to plan, however. He started as a regular in the team, before suffering a cruciate ligament rupture in December.

When football returned with the Coupe de la Ligue final and the Champions League knockout stages, Reine-Adelaide found himself on the bench on every occasion. Now the new Ligue 1 campaign is underway, and he was a substitute once again last Friday.

Clearly, the 22-year-old was expecting more after his transfer. He’s going public with his desire to move on already.

“Nothing is impossible in football, but it is difficult to imagine my future at Lyon,” Reine-Adelaide said. “Today, I need to play matches consistently.

“I hear that I need to wait for departures in order to get a starting spot. But that is not the project that was sold to me upon my arrival last summer, otherwise, I don’t think Lyon would have spent this much money to sign me.

“When I am told something during the week, it is not the same as what happens on the weekend. I therefore want to find a solution before the end of the window.

“I like football more than anything and this situation cannot continue. For my progression and my personal happiness, and because dialogue is at a dead end, I want to quite simply have a different project.”

Rennes are reported to have placed a bid of €23m for Reine-Adelaide.

The transfer window in France closes on 5 October 2020.

Jeff Reine-Adelaide takes blame for not making it at Arsenal

Jeff Reine-Adelaide says it’s his fault he didn’t make it at Arsenal, because he couldn’t find enough consistency in his performances.

Photo via L'Equipe
Photo via L’Equipe

Jeff Reine-Adelaide spent two years at Arsenal, though the final half a season he was on loan with Angers. During his Arsenal spell he made plenty of appearances for the u23s, but only eight for the first team.

In the end, he left for Angers on a permanent deal for just £1.44m. That did increase by £4.6m thanks to a sell-on fee when Reine-Adelaide joined Olympique Lyonnais the next year.

Still, a total of £6.04m isn’t particularly impressive.

As for why he didn’t get more of a chance in North London, Reine-Adelaide thinks he deserves part of the blame, though insists other circumstances played a part too.

Lyon's French forward Moussa Dembele (L) celebrates with Lyon's French midfielder Jeff Reine-Adelaide after scoring his second goal during the UEFA Champions League quarter-final football match between Manchester City and Lyon at the Jose Alvalade stadium in Lisbon on August 15, 2020. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / POOL / AFP)
Lyon’s French forward Moussa Dembele (L) celebrates with Lyon’s French midfielder Jeff Reine-Adelaide after scoring his second goal during the UEFA Champions League quarter-final football match between Manchester City and Lyon at the Jose Alvalade stadium in Lisbon on August 15, 2020. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / POOL / AFP)

“There were several circumstances,” Reine-Adelaide said (via Sport Witness). “When I had the opportunity to get playing time, I achieved good and bad performances.

“So it’s my fault, I must admit because I wasn’t always good. However, I didn’t really have a chance. I played for the cup matches, with players who didn’t know each other very well… It was complicated.”

Lyon French football midfielder Jeff Reine-Adelaide answers journalists' questions, on July 1, 2020 in Evian-les-Bains, during the Olympique Lyonnais football training camp. (Photo by JEFF PACHOUD / AFP)
Lyon French football midfielder Jeff Reine-Adelaide answers journalists’ questions, on July 1, 2020 in Evian-les-Bains, during the Olympique Lyonnais football training camp. (Photo by JEFF PACHOUD / AFP)

He also told L’Equipe, “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.

“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 7 September 2019
L’Equipe 7 September 2019

The 22-year-old made a decent start to life with his new club this campaign. He scored a couple of goals and assisted three in his first 19 appearances.

A cruciate ligament rupture in December would have ended his season had it not been for the break in global football. That gave him the time needed to recover and he was able to play for Lyon, for three minutes, against Manchester City in the Champions League as Pep Guardiola’s men went out.

Jeff had played in every one of Lyon’s Champions League games until this point, bar the first leg against Juventus, so it was great to see him get on the pitch for such a big result.

Reine-Adelaide was also on the bench as Lyon lost the Coupe de la Ligue on penalties at the end of July.

It is certainly an eventful end to his first year of a five-year deal with the French club.

Reine-Adelaide has plenty of time to make himself a success in Ligue 1, and we wish him luck.

Speaking not long after he left in 2018, Jeff Reine-Adelaide says he learned a lot in just a few weeks under Unai Emery and admits he would’ve liked to spend more time working with the then-Arsenal head coach.

Villarreal unveil Unai Emery as head coach (Photo via Villarreal CF)
Villarreal unveil Unai Emery as head coach (Photo via Villarreal CF)

Reine-Adelaide spent the first few weeks of pre-season with Arsenal, playing and scoring in a couple of friendlies. After that, he left for Angers on a permanent deal, having spent some time on loan with the French club last season.

Speaking in the French media to Foot Mercato, Reine-Adelaide revealed that he was impressed with Arsenal’s new head coach.

“On the little that I could rub shoulders with him, he is a very good coach,” the former Gunner said. “He brings back a lot of joy to the training sessions. He is a pure tactician. I learned a lot in three weeks with him. I would have liked to work with him. But that did not happen and I’m in Angers.”

The then 20-year-old also had some nice words to say about Arsene Wenger and his spell with Arsenal in general.

“I met world-class stars,” he said (via Sport Witness). “I only have positive things to say about my time at Arsenal. I trained with great players, known around the world. I played a few games, and I met a golden coach in Arsène Wenger.

“He taught me many things. I think I learnt how to be mentally strong there. It wasn’t always easy. He always helped me, always talked to me, before or after training, to tell me I was young and it would happen one day or another.

“He helped me progress as a player but also as a young man. It’s important for the manager to help people become men. I don’t know if he’ll take over another team, but I hope for him that it happens.”

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