Monaco want Lemar until summer
Monaco say there is a 'fair chance' that Thomas Lemar will leave the club next summer but the Ligue 1 club insists they will resist any Premier League clubs that attempt to sign him in January.
Arsenal bid more than £90m on Deadline Day in August for the France international but no deal was agreed, with Lemar apparently unwilling to decide his future hastily.
Vadim Vasilyev, Monaco's vice-president, says the Gunners were not the only English club chasing Lemar's signature in August, but he revealed a move to the Emirates was close to happening.
It was Arsenal that was really close to finalising the deal.Vadim Vasilyev
"Liverpool were really interested," Vasilyev told Sky Sports. "But it was Arsenal that was really close to finalising the deal."
The 21-year-old has made more than 60 appearances for Monaco since arriving from Caen, while he now has eight full caps for France.
Vasilyev is willing to concede the player may leave next summer, but he says Monaco's preference is to resist all comers in January.
"Definitely next summer will be something to look at, although you know in football there are no guarantees. We had some players who were supposed to leave this summer but didn't leave because of X, Y, Z. I think it would be fair to say Thomas will have a fair chance to an exit next year," he added.
"January, in football, never say never, but this is not what we're thinking of, this is really not in our plans."
Monaco are 8/15 to win Ligue 1 this season in the betting without Paris St-Germain market. Lyon are 9/2 while Marseille are 13/5.
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