Agent suggests Alexandre Lacazette has £61m release clause in Arsenal contract

Alexandre Lacazette Arsenal

A Russian agent has claimed that he offered Alexandre Lacazette to Zenit St. Petersburg, but they baulked at his release clause.

Lacazette is currently recovering from an ankle injury that has kept him out of action since mid-September.

He has built a profitable partnership with team-mate Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on and off the pitch.

With Nicolas Pepe's arrival at the club, however, and Lacazette's current injury giving youngsters like Bukayo Saka a chance to shine, Lacazette may struggle to get back into the starting XI upon his return.

The French striker was voted Arsenal's player of the season last season having scored 19 goals and assisted 13 in all competitions.

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But there were reports of Lacazette leaving the Gunners in the summer, with Barcelona and Atletico Madrid rumoured to be interested.

However, as per the Metro, agent Dmitry Cheltsov claims he also offered Lacazette to Russian outfit Zenit St Petersburg - and suggested the striker has a release clause.

"I offered Alexandre Lacazette to Zenit," Cheltsov told Sport Business Gazeta.

"Their sporting director Javier Ribalta said to me: ‘Are you crazy? His release clause is €68m [£61m]'."

If true, the release clause is roughly £15m above the £46.5m Arsenal paid Lyon for Lacazette in 2017.

Cheltsov insisted they could lower the fee if they negotiated.

"I told him you can negotiate with Arsenal; I'm sure they will be ready to accept something between €50m and €55m [£45m – £49.5m]," he said.

"His salary would be €7-8m [£6.3m – £7.2m] after tax."

In the end, however, it's understood that Zenit opted to sign Barcelona's Malcolm for an initial £36m instead.

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