Arsenal seem to have convinced their first transfer target for the summer, with Lyon midfielder Clement Grenier admitting that he will be leaving the French club, and the Gunners could very well be the club he joins.
This could be a major coup for Arsene Wenger, knowing his affinity for young French players, and his ability to nurture them into superstars. Samir Nasri is a classic example of the same, and the playmaker now plies his trade at Manchester City. Given the inconsistency of Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey in terms of playing time, Wenger will have a skillful midfielder in Grenier available to combine with Mikel Arteta and Santi Cazorla.
For the record, Grenier started his career at FC Annonay in 1997 as a youngster, and his talent was soon recognized by Lyon, who signed him on a youth contract in 2002. The 22-year old spent 7 years until 2009 in the youth academy, before he was rewarded with a senior contract with the club. The midfielder snatched the opportunity to play for the elite club, and ever since, has played 67 times for the French club, scoring 6 goals.
The Arsenal target has also progressed well on the international scene, having begun his France career at the age of 16, when he was picked for the French Under-16 side. As he progressed in the Lyon academy, he was chosen for the Under-17, Under-18, Under-19, Under 20 and Under-21 side, establishing himself as a potential senior player for France.
According to Metro, Grenier has confirmed his intentions of finding a new club this summer on the basis of footballing reasons. The reasoning comes in the wake of times where footballers are assumed to be money minded if they move to a big club.
Grenier said, “I have made a decision about which club I will join this summer.”
“I have made the choice for sporting reasons above all.”
“Is it Arsenal? It could be them.”
The midfielder admitted that going to Arsenal would not guarantee regular first team action, but the Frenchman instead sees it as a challenge to set targets for himself.
He continued: “There is competition for places there, but you get that at all big clubs. It won’t stop me making my decision.”
“I’m still young, but I have always set myself targets and I’ll do everything possible to exceed them.”