Football agent Dmitry Cheltsov, who’s a specialist in the French transfer market, has spoken to the Russian media and claims he offered Alexandre Lacazette to Zenit St Petersburg before the club went on to sign Malcom from Barcelona.
Speaking about the failed move to the Russian Super League, Cheltsov said to Sport Business Gazeta: “I offered Alexandre Lacazette to Zenit. Their sporting director Javier Ribalta said to me: ‘Are you crazy? His release clause is €68m.’
“I told him you can negotiate with Arsenal. I am sure they will be ready to accept something between €50m and €55m. His salary would be €7-8m after tax.”
Cheltsov also added that after Zenit refused to sign Lacazette, they went on to get Malcom from Barcelona for €50m and the Brazilian was given a similar salary to that of the France international.
The 28 year old joined Arsenal in 2017 from Olympique Lyonnais for €53m so it’s unlikely he has such a release clause written in his contract, despite that being claimed by the Russian agent.
Under Unai Emery, the Frenchman has become a key player for Arsenal, and he’s formed a impressive partnership with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang since the Gabon international was signed from Borussia Dortmund.
Lacazette is under contract with Gunners until June 2022, and this all sounds very much like an agent bragging about something and overstating his power to build a deal.