Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas is convinced that star striker and captain Memphis Depay will snub a move to Barcelona in favour of signing a new contract.
The Dutchman has been heavily linked with a move to Ronald Koeman’s side and is able to negotiate with the Catalans on a pre-contract arrangement, with his Lyon deal expiring at the end of June.
Depay nearly sealed a move to Barcelona in the last two transfer windows but financial issues at the Spanish side scuppered the move both times. It was revealed in January that Barcelona’s debt is approaching £1billion.
With this in mind, Aulas insists there is still a chance that Depay could remain at the Ligue 1 club.
The Lyon president told Le Progres: ‘Until the end we believe that he will renew for next season. Right now it is not something that is possible but why not?’
Depay has been the key man for title-chasing Lyon this season with 13 goals and six assists in 25 league appearances this season. In the French top flight, only Kylian Mbappe has more goals than the 27-year-old Dutchman.
The forward also played a key role in Lyon reaching the Champions League semi-finals last season – beating Juventus and Manchester City on the way – but the club did not qualify for Europe this term due to a mid-table finish in the league.
Now Depay is firing again for an ambitious side, Aulas was full of praise for the ‘world class’ Dutchman this term.