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 By Ian Holyman

Alexandre Lacazette a lot better than Gareth Bale, Lyon president says

Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has told Le Parisien that reported Liverpool target Alexandre Lacazette is better than Gareth Bale and closed the door on a departure for the in-form forward.

In Lyon's 3-0 victory over Toulouse at the weekend, which took his club top of the table, Lacazette scored twice to join Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Luis Suarez as the only men to have scored a brace in four successive games in any of Europe's five major leagues in the last decade.

The 23-year-old France international, who struck 15 times last term, now has a Ligue 1-leading 19 goals to his name, and his displays have alerted some of the continent's most prestigious clubs, with Liverpool said to be one of the most ardent suitors.

Lyon have, however, staked their future on bringing youth academy talents such as Lacazette and reported Arsenal target Nabil Fekir into the first team, and Aulas claimed the former was priceless.

"You can't put a figure on it," he said. "What's the name of the Welshman at Real Madrid? I think Alexandre is a lot better. But Alexandre doesn't have a price, so it's pointless thinking of one.

"Today, there is no positive response to a departure for Alexandre or Nabil or any other."

Aulas added that the long-term contract extension Lacazette signed earlier this season meant those attempting to lure him away from the Stade de Gerland would be disappointed.

"We have resolved the problem by signing a contract through to 2018," he said. "I find him transformed. He has grown. He's an intelligent boy -- he knows the team and the coach allow him to express himself and enable him to become one of Europe's best marksmen."

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