October 7, 2022

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Arsenal confirm Lacazette’s exit from the club

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Alexandre Lacazette has played his final match for Arsenal, the north London giants confirmed on Thursday.

Arsenal announced the striker’s time with the club will come to an end by the end of June, when his contract expires.

Lacazette moved from Lyon to Arsenal in 2017 for an initial €53million (Β£46.5m) but made his intentions to depart Emirates Stadium clear during the 2021-22 campaign.

The 30-year-old suggested he wanted to play in the Champions League, where he has never featured for Arsenal, but admitted he would be open to re-signing for boyhood club Lyon.

Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas and director of football Vincent Ponsot responded by outlining their desire to bring the forward to the Groupama Stadium.

The Ligue 1 side, who will not play in Europe next season after finishing eighth in the French top flight, could soon secure the services of Lacazette.

“Laca has been a fantastic player for us,” said Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta. “He’s been a real leader on and off the pitch and has been a very important influence to our younger players.

“His commitment with us has been exceptional and we wish him and his family success and happiness.”

Lacazette endured a disappointing scoring campaign last season as Arsenal finished fifth, missing out on Champions League qualification to north London rivals Tottenham.

The striker only scored four times across 30 Premier League games, his worst tally since the 2012-13 season when he found the net just three times in Ligue 1 for Lyon.

Nevertheless, Lacazette looks back fondly on his time in England.

“Five years ago, my dream came true.. To sign for Arsenal,” he wrote on Instagram. “It’s been an honour to wear the jersey, to be a part of this family.

“I won trophies, I met real and nice people, and I fell even more in love with this club. Good luck for the future of the club and the fans, it’s been a pleasure. Once a Gunner, Always a Gunner.”

Lacazette, speaking to Arsenal’s official website, said it was time for “a new experience and a new adventure”.

He said: “When I came to Arsenal, I was a bit like a kid with big names, big players, a lot of pressure, and I was not talking so much.

“Year after year I started to talk more, my English got better, my relationships with people at the club got stronger and with the players as well. So I’m happy for who I am now and where I came from.

“I’ll keep in contact with my team-mates, with the coaches, with the club. I supported Arsenal since I was young, so obviously I’m going to keep supporting them. I know I will come back to the stadium as well.”

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