Alexandre Lacazette has confirmed that he gave Folarin Balogun a push towards going on loan in Ligue 1.
Folarin Balogun went on loan to Stade de Reims this summer, a spell which has gone excellently so far.
The striker is joint-top of the top scorers tally with Jonathan David and Kylian Mbappe, having scored 15 league goals already.
Speaking to the media, Alexandre Lacazette says he advised Balogun to make that move to France and show what he can do.
“Flo, he was coming to train with us a lot but I could see he just needed a bit of experience of the first team,” Lacazette said.
“So, I remember I told him if you go on loan maybe in France, because in France he has got the quality to perform well.
“I’m happy for him that he came to France and he can play every week and he can show his quality to a lot of people.
“I’m not surprised that he can score goals now because he has always had this quality.”
This isn’t totally new information, as Balogun had revealed the same story earlier this season.
“He’s a great player,” Balogun said of Lacazette. “He always helped me when I was at Arsenal, he tried to help me progress. He gave me advice.
“I remember talking to him, he was telling me to come to Ligue 1. He was like, ‘Go ahead, you’re going to prove yourself there.’
“Maybe he should become an agent because he has a good knowledge of football.”
Things are also going well for Lacazette since his return to France, as he’s scored 14 goals in Ligue 1, just one fewer than Balogun.
Their two clubs are even having similar seasons, with Lyon in ninth on 35 points and Reims in 10th on 34 points. Though Lyon have the advantage of still being in the French Cup at the quarter-final stage.
But whilst Lacazette is kickstarting the next stage of his career in France, Arsenal fans will hope Balogun’s strong form leads to a reintroduction to Mikel Arteta’s squad.