Arsenal are still in contact with Houssem Aouar’s camp, informing him they want to make him a key player in Mikel Arteta’s side, according to a report.

Lyon's French midfielder Houssem Aouar celebrates after scoring a goal during the French L1 football match between FC Metz and Olympique Lyonnais at the Saint Symphorien stadium in Longeville-lès-Metz, eastern France, on February 21, 2020. (Photo by JEAN-CHRISTOPHE VERHAEGEN / AFP)
Lyon’s French midfielder Houssem Aouar celebrates after scoring a goal during the French L1 football match between FC Metz and Olympique Lyonnais at the Saint Symphorien stadium in Longeville-lès-Metz, eastern France, on February 21, 2020. (Photo by JEAN-CHRISTOPHE VERHAEGEN / AFP)

TheAFCBell report that Arsenal remain in contact with Houssem Aouar’s camp ahead of the January transfer window. They’ve sent ‘clear signals’ to the player and his family that Mikel Arteta intends to make Aouar the core of his team.

The player’s grandfather is reportedly a key member of Aouar’s decision-making process, and welcomed Arsenal’s interest in the summer, though his agent is pushing for a Champions League contender.

Arsenal are still in the Europa League, which the agent would consider, but sitting in 15th place makes it look unlikely they’ll qualify for any kind of European competition next season.

L’Equipe reported earlier this month that Aouar could leave Lyon before the summer window, though Arsenal aren’t his only suitors. Juventus are actually the more strongly-linked club at the moment, as they reportedly almost had a deal for him in the summer.

Lyon recently dropped Aouar from a matchday squad for disciplinary reasons. The player had refused to take part in the post-match warm-down session after Angers, but he insists that was just a misunderstanding.

“I’ll be at Lyon until next summer, at least,” the midfielder said afterwards. “I do not see how I could be unhappy in my city, in my club. That is something that I do not understand.

“I am very happy to be here, I took the decision to stay with the club that formed me, I savour every day I have here.”

The 22-year-old midfielder now has two goals and three assists in 11 appearances this season.

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