Real Madrid must match Sevilla offer to sign Diaz, says Lyon president

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Mariano Diaz Lyon
The 25-year-old's move back to the Bernabeu is not a done deal, but OL are already eyeing up replacements

Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has confirmed that Mariano Diaz has expressed a wish to leave the club, with Sevilla leading the race for the striker.

Real Madrid have also been in touch about a move for the 25-year-old attacker, who they sold to OL for just €8 million (£7m/$9m) a year ago.

Julen Lopetegui’s side retain a buy-back clause on the poacher, but they will have to match Sevilla’s offer if they are to take it up. Reports suggest the Andalusians are willing to pay €33m (£30m/$39m) for a player who netted 18 times in Ligue 1 last season.

Speaking after an announcement that confirmed centre-back Mariano has signed a new deal with Lyon, Aulas said: “Mariano has told us that he wants to leave. Sevilla are interested and we've got an agreement with them. Real Madrid could match their offer and contact us. Nothing is done.”

Previously, Sevilla have admitted that they think Los Blancos are ready to gazump them at the last for a player who has admitted it would be "incredible" to move back to Madrid.

Meanwhile, Aulas lifted the lid on a potential replacement for the player who has been capped once by the Dominican Republic in a friendly, leaving him still open to play for Spain.

Moussa Dembele of Celtic has been linked with a move to Parc OL, and the president confirmed that it is a possibility.

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“We're interested in Dembele. We're in contact with him and he's interested. But he's just one option among others,” he said.

Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers has confirmed that Dembele missed training on Wednesday in order to discuss his future, on the eve of the Hoops’ Europa League meeting with Sudva on Thursday. 

Lyon might also sell Maxwel Cornet before the transfer window is up, as the wide attacker has been linked to the Bundesliga, while they have not yet given up hope of signing Benfica centre-back Ruben Dias, though that is dependent on Benfica being eliminated from the Champions League on Wednesday evening. They face PAOK Salonika after a 1-1 draw in the first leg.