Lyon president Jean Michel Aulas claims Liverpool will have no chance of luring prolific striker Alexandre Lacazette to Anfield this summer.
Responding to a story posted by the Twitter account @OL_Plus - via footmercato.com - Aulas categorically denied reports that Lacazette is heading to Liverpool.
"Your information is trash," the Lyon president wrote, according to ESPN. "Liverpool have never called, and as they are not playing in the Champions League, they don't have the money, nor would they be able to interest him."
Aulas' response suggests Lacazette is available this summer, but only if a club competing in next season's Champions League cough up enough money.
After scoring an incredible 31 goals in 38 appearances for Lyon this season, 24-year-old Lacazette will cost a fee well in excess of £30 million.
Liverpool need to replace Mario Balotelli
A host of top clubs are reportedly keen to secure his services, including Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea and, as Aulas acknowledges, Liverpool.
But it seems Lacazette will only leave Lyon for a club competing in the Champions League, which rules out a move to Anfield.
Liverpool are poised to enter the market for a new striker this summer following Mario Balotelli's failure to make an impact with the Merseyside outfit.
Brendan Rodgers' side scored significantly fewer goals this season - compared to the 2013-14 campaign - due to the loss of Luis Suarez and a succession of untimely injuries sustained by Daniel Sturridge.
Balotelli was signed for £16 million from AC Milan, but scored a paltry four goals in 26 appearances this term, only one of which came in the Premier League.
Lacazette would be a significant upgrade on Balotelli, but it seems Rodgers will be forced to turn his attentions elsewhere, specifically to a striker willing to play Europa League football next season.
Lacazette to join Champions League club
So, which club is Lacazette most likely to sign for this summer?
Manchester United are in need of a new centre-forward after passing on the opportunity to sign Radamel Falcao on a permanent deal and have the money to make the transfer happen.
But Lacazette will want first-team assurances before agreeing to join any club, which may rule out a transfer to Chelsea, who will keep Diego Costa as their first-choice striker despite fresh rumours claiming the Spain international is unhappy in London.
Arsenal is a more likely destination for Lacazette, who could take the place of fellow France international Olivier Giroud.
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