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Yoann Gourcuff willing to lower his salary to sign with Arsenal


Lyon’s French midfielder Yoann Gourcuff (R) vies with Nice’s Belgian midfielder Christian Bruls (L) during the French L1 football match Lyon (OL) vs. Nice (OGC) on August 10, 2013 at the Stade Gerland stadium in Lyon, eastern France. AFP PHOTO / PHILIPPE DESMAZES (Photo credit should read PHILIPPE DESMAZES/AFP/Getty Images)

AFP/Getty Images

France international Yoann Gourcuff is practically begging for a move to Arsenal.

Earlier today Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas told L’Equipe that Gourcuff would be prepared to accept a pay cut in order to seal a switch to Arsenal. The attacking midfielder has been long linked with a move to Emirates Stadium and Lyon is reportedly ready to part with the 27 year old if a suitable offer is tabled.

What about Aulas selling Gourcuff to another French club?

Probably not gonna happen. After Gourcuff scored and provided two assists in Lyon’s 4-0 dominance of Nice on Saturday, Aulus said: “Can you see us paying part of his salary for him to play against us with another French club? We’ve never considered that and it would be even more stupid now than it was a fortnight ago.”

Which leaves a move to a club outside of Ligue 1, with Aulas admitting that "[a]ll that I know, if I understood correctly, is that he was ready to lower his salary to go to Arsenal.”

The question then becomes, will Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger grant Gourcuff his wish?

The 27 year old typically plays in the attacking midfield role, just behind the striker or out wide to the left. His game would fit well with the Gunners, as Gourcuff specializes in quick, short passes, often looking to lay the ball off and receive it back in advanced positions before slipping it into a striker running behind the defense.

At Arsenal, this kind of playmaking ability could be a valuable asset operating behind fellow-countryman Olivier Giroud. Gourcuff may have a difficult time ousting an in-form Tomas Rosicky from his spot as playmaker but given the Czech international’s injury history and Gervinho being sold to Roma, Gourcuff could make an impact in North London.

Is he the next Cesc Fabregas? Probably not. But a player who’s willing to take a salary cut is a player that one has to believe Wenger will look to bring in.

Follow @mprindi