Liverpool and Newcastle United have suffered a massive blow in their pursuit of Lyon star Alexandre Lacazette after the Ligue 1 club's Chairman Jean-Michel Aulas warned that the striker is not for sale.
The Reds and the Magpies were reportedly interested in signing the Frenchman, who is valued at €20m (£16.84m) by his current employers. Brendan Rodgers' side sold Luis Suarez to Barcelona and are looking to reinvest that amount in strengthening their attacking department.
Meanwhile, the Tyneside club's boss Alan Pardew has already added Siem de Jong, Ayoze Perez and Emmanuel Riviere to bolster his side's attacking prowess. The 53-year-old was believed to be pursuing Lacazette to add to the existing French contingent at St James' Park.
The Ligue 1 outfit have already lost Bafetimbi Gomis to Swansea City for free and are unwilling to lose out on another top striker. Aulas splashed cold water on both the Premier League club's hopes by revealing that the 23-year-old will not be leaving Stade Gerland this summer.
"We are in talks and I don't know if he will prolong for two or three years. Whatever happens, he is not for sale. The club's strategy has been to build an education centre that produces high quality players," Sky Sports quoted Aulas as saying.
"We will give them the opportunity to have success at Lyon. The difference between here and other clubs is that we set a strategy and we keep it for five years."
Lacazette, who is also capable of playing on both wings, still has two years left in his current contract. He featured in 54 matches for Lyon last season, scoring 22 goals and managing six assists in the process.
Last week, the striker too echoed Aulas' words by stating, "I stay in Lyon. I want to continue my progress here."
However, Liverpool are less likely to be concerned by the Lyon academy product's decision to stay as they are pressing for signatures of other strikers.
The Merseyside club are believed to be on the verge of signing Divock Origi and Loic Remy from Lille and Queens Park Rangers respectively along with Southampton centre-back Dejan Lovren.
The Northern Irishman has spent nearly £60m having signed Rickie Lambert, Emre Can, Adam Lallana and Lazar Markovic in the ongoing transfer window and more arrivals are expected at Anfield before the 1 September deadline day.