Marseille push for Ben Arfa
Pape Diouf is confident Marseille can reach an agreement to sign Lyon attacker Hatem Ben Arfa.
By Patrick Haond
Last Updated: 25/06/08 1:08pm
Marseille chairman Pape Diouf is confident the club can reach an agreement to sign Lyon attacker Hatem Ben Arfa.
The French champions are prepared to sell Ben Arfa for the right price and are rumoured to want 15million euros (£11.8million) for the 21-year-old.
Though the two clubs have yet to settle on a fee, Diouf believes Ben Arfa can have the same impact as former Marseille stars Roger Magnusson and Chris Waddle.
"About Ben Arfa? I am confident," Diouf told L'Equipe. "He is a boy in the tradition of Magnusson or Waddle. Here, we love that."
Offer must be higher
But Lyon's sporting director Bernard Lacombe has warned Marseille that Ben Arfa will be staying at Stade Gerland, unless the bid is improved.
Lacombe told the club's official website: "For the moment, taking into consideration the figure proposed by Marseille, it is not worthwhile to talk about it.
"Hatem will be in our squad next season if the offer is not higher."
Meanwhile, Diouf is refusing to countenance the sale of Djibril Cisse after the Marseille striker was linked with a return to the Premier League.
Diouf said: "Do you know a lot of players capable of scoring 37 goals in a year-and-a-half? So he is definitely staying with us."
Marseille have agreed a swap deal with Toulouse which will see back-up goalkeeper Rudy Riou move to Stade Velodrome and Cedric Carasso head in the opposite direction.