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Nice close to signing former Lyon defender Clerc

Nice coach Eric Roy claims the club are close to signing former Lyon defender Francois Clerc, who has been a free agent since being released from Stade Gerland at the end of last season.

Clerc was deemed surplus to requirements by Lyon boss Claude Puel and ended his nine-year association with the club, but he has been unable to find a new employer.

Nice have opened the new Ligue 1 season with two draws and Roy admits he is looking to bolster his defensive options by securing a permanent deal for the France international.

"He's been training with us for a while now and we'll look at the idea of his spending a season with us," Roy told RMC radio.

"There is a good chance he will be a Nice player this season; he wants it and we want it. I hope the administrators are prepared to give us this gift."

Clerc, 27, won six French league titles with Lyon and his performances saw him earn an international call-up and 13 caps for France.

But he has struggled with injuries in the last couple of seasons, playing just eight games in the 2009-10 campaign, and was usurped as first-choice right back at Stade Gerland by Anthony Reveillere.

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