Arsenal told to pay £13m for French starlet

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Arsenal have been told they will have to pay at least £13m if they are to convince Lille to part ways with Florian Thauvin, reports French paper La Provence.

The Ligue 1 outfit are thought to have put the price tag on the head of the starlet in an attempt to ward off interest from rivals Marseille.

According to the paper, a well-informed source said: "What could happen is that Lille say, 'OK, we will sell him but only for €15m (£13m)'.

"You see, at the end of the day, they [Marseille] do not want him that much."

But that price tag should not deter Arsene Wenger and his bulging wallet after he missed out on the youngster last summer.

Arsenal were thought to have submitted a bid in the region of £4m after he impressed playing for Bastia last season.

Newcastle were also attempting to sign Thauvin last summer before he ultimately joined Lille in a £3m deal that also saw him loaned back to Bastia.

The 20-year-old's stock has since risen considerably after scoring seven goals in 12 games towards the end of the campaign before playing a starring role from France in the Under-20 World Cup.

Marseille have reportedly submitted a bid in excess of £7m for Thauvin but Lille have reiterated their desire to keep hold of the hot prospect.

Lille director Frederic Paquet was recently quoted as saying: “We’ve always been very clear - his departure has never been either considered or conceivable.

“Florian has just arrived at the club, he’s 100 percent a Lille player and we’re very happy about that. We’re counting a lot on his talent to enable the team to perform.”

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