Arsenal dealt blow in chase for Lyon midfielder

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Arsenal have been dealt a blow in their alleged pursuit of Yoann Gourcuff, after Lyon manager Remi Garde reiterated his importance to the first-team, reports talkSPORT.

The 27-year-old has long been linked with a move to north London, having caught the eye of Arsene Wenger after rising to prominence in Ligue 1.

However, Gourcuff's inconsistent form has prevented him from ever reaching his full potential, resulting in a failure to earn a big-money move away from Stade de Gerland.

The Gunners boss has continued to monitor the player's development though, and will have taken note of his recent impressive performances, which has seen him score three goals in his past four appearances.

Garde took the opportunity to praise the impact Gourcuff has made in recent weeks, intimating that his foreseeable future remains in France.

"Even if it was fewer [goals], Yoann, through his involvement, is one of the players on whom I can rely to solve tactical problems on the pitch," he said. "In this too, he is a technical leader.

"Today he is a different boy who takes great pleasure in the game and the team that is looking to improve suits him well."

According to the Daily Express, Arsenal tried to sign Gourcuff on loan during the summer, and two weeks ago had opened discussions with Lyon over the possibility of a permanent transfer, for a fee between £4million and £8million.

It's true that Wenger has a good relationship with Garde, having coached the 47-year-old former Gunners star, but that is unlikely to convince him to part with the midfielder, so don't expect him to arrive at the Emirates Stadium.

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