Long-term Arsenal target Andre Onana has agreed personal terms with French side Lyon over a summer transfer, dealing a huge blow to the Gunners’ ambitions of signing the Ajax star.
The north Londoners are hoping to complete a squad overhaul this summer, which had included the possibility of replacing current goalkeeper Bernd Leno, and bringing in a brand new face in the transfer window.
Onana was a name regularly linked with a move to the Emirates stadium, but those hopes now appear to be dashed. According to French outlet L’Equipe, the 25-year-old has instead decided to join Lyon this summer, and has agreed personal terms with the Ligue 1 outfit.
Ajax and Lyon are yet to reach an agreement over a suitable transfer fee, but Onana’s desire to leave Amsterdam and join the French side demonstrates that a move to Arsenal is far from his main priority.
The Gunners had been close to finalising a deal for the Cameroonian goalkeeper, but it soon became apparent that they were not the only club in the running for his signature.
And these latest developments suggest that Mikel Arteta has in fact missed out on Onana, with the Ajax star preferring a move to France over a Premier League switch. The goalkeeper is currently serving a nine-month ban from football, after failing a doping test in January 2021.
He was originally handed a 12-month ban which was shortened on appeal, meaning he could be back in action by November 2021. Despite his off-field issues, Onana has remained in Arsenal’s plans for the summer transfer window, as Arteta looks to revolutionise his playing squad for the new season.
Current first-choice goalkeeper Leno has been tipped for an Emirates exit, although he admitted back in May that he would like to stay with the Gunners and carry them back to the Champions League.
Matteo Guendouzi has already left the club this summer, while Granit Xhaka and Hector Bellerin are both expected to depart in the coming weeks, as a new-look Arsenal begins to take shape.