According to TF1 journalist Saber Desfarges (via GFFN), Matteo Guendouzi is now set to remain with Marseille, despite interest from Aston Villa during the January transfer window.
West Ham United were also reportedly interested in the former Arsenal midfielder, but Guendouzi is seemingly declining a move back to the Premier League out of attachment to Marseille.
It probably helps that Marseille are significantly more likely to be competing near the top of the table and playing in the Champions League over the next year.
In addition to Guendouzi’s hesitance, Villa are also yet to place an official offer to sign him, despite their interest.
This is all relevant to Arsenal because Guendouzi has a sell-on clause. His permanent transfer to Marseille cost a modest €10-11m fee, but the Gunners will add to that if he’s sold on.
After a second-place league finish last season, Marseille fans will likely feel underwhelmed at a lack of progress from their side this campaign.
They were eliminated at the group stage from the Champions League – failing to even drop into the Europa League – and they’re third in Ligue 1.
But Aston Villa are down in 11th place, out of the cups, and with no imminent prospect of European football. It would have been a strange decision for Guendouzi to make that move.