Lyon 'will not sell' Alexandre Lacazette to Liverpool - Jean-Michel Aulas
Jean-Michel Aulas has told L'Equipe Lyon will stand firm in the face of growing interest in striker Alexandre Lacazette and will not sell the in-form France international.
Lacazette, 23, has struck a league-leading 17 goals in the first half of the Ligue 1 season in France, transforming himself from promising youngster into a bona fide star.
His impressive performances have led to reported interest in him from clubs beyond France's borders with Liverpool, seeking goals in the wake of Luis Suarez's departure, one of the clubs alleged to be pursuing Lacazette.
Though Lyon's finances are not in rude health, Aulas insisted the seven-time French champions would not be tempted to part with their latest youth academy prospect-turned-star as Lacazette will be worth more as an asset on the pitch.
"It's more than a desire, it's a decision. It has happened, by obligation, that we say 'No' in the hope of getting a big offer, but this time, it's 'No,' and it's a question of strategy. We will not sell," said Aulas, who has made a point of keeping homegrown talent, such as Lacazette, Clement Grenier and Maxime Gonalons, at OL with a view to them starring at the club's new Stade des Lumieres as of next year.
"We have just invested more than 400 million euros in a new stadium, so to sell our best players, who would enable us to play the Champions League in that stadium, would be to go against our strategy."
On Monday, Lyon boss Hubert Fournier told RMC the club will not let reported Liverpool target Lacazette leave the club in January.