Lopez going nowhere, says Aulas
Lyon's Argentine striker Lisandro Lopez has been linked with a move to Qatar, according to reports – but the club's president has said he is going nowhere.
Lopez, 30, had been expected to quit Lyon at the end of the season, but it later appeared he would stay with the seven-time French champions for one more year.
However, with both Lopez and fellow forward Bafetimbi Gomis in the final year of their contracts and Lyon looking to cut costs, one of them is expected to leave before the transfer window closes.
Gomis, 27, appears the more likely to go, with L'Equipe reporting that Tottenham had joined Newcastle in expressing an interest in him.
Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas said Lopez, one of the highest earners at Lyon, would not be going, telling the paper: "Impossible - there's no risk of it."
He added: "It's out of the question that he might go. We're doing everything we can so that he might be happy here, and the club needs him.
"To suggest that he might leave for Qatar is to undervalue him. He's a star."
L'Equipe said Newcastle had made their first official contact over a €10 million transfer for Gomis on Monday, with Aulas set to meet the player and his agents on Thursday.
Lyon had been hoping to sign Kevin Gameiro if either Gomis or Lopez decided to leave, but both Le Parisien and L'Equipe report that the out-of-favour Paris Saint-Germain striker is set to join Sevilla instead.
Lyon coach Remi Garde will be hoping that the situation is a lot clearer by the time his side host Swiss outfit Grasshoppers Zurich in a Champions League qualifier next week.
Before that, Garde must prepare his team for the visit of Real Madrid to the Stade Gerland on Wednesday in his club's final pre-season friendly.