What we all suspected might happen did happen today. Alexandre Lacazette’s move to Atletico Madrid fell apart today because, well, because nobody can move to Atletico Madrid right now. The transfer ban AM is under was upheld, meaning they can’t sign new players until January. Rather than waiting until then to play and having a nice, well-compensated vacation, the 26 year old understandably has decided to move somewhere else.
Where else? Well, if Arsene Wenger has his way, Arsenal is where else. The club has made what Lyon terms a “nice bid” for the player (although I have to say €69 million seems a bit high to me for his services), but of course the challenge here is to convince Lacazette that going to Arsenal is worth putting his Champions League ambitions on hold for another year while Arsenal are busy winning the Europa League.
But, this is Arsenal’s new reality - they have to sell players on Arsenal, not on automatic Champions League playing time. If they can do that with Lacazette, there’s no reason they can’t do it with almost anyone, right? Time will tell.