Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud could have joined Lyon this summer only for Arsene Wenger to step in and block the move, according to the French club's president Jean Michel-Aulas.

Arsenal and Lyon have already done business this summer with the Gunners signing Alexandre Lacazette for a club record £52.6m. During the lengthy negotiations over the fee for the striker, Giroud's name entered the equation.

But while the Ligue 1 side were keen to offer the former Montpellier striker a route back to France, Wenger was not prepared to sanction the move, despite the growing number of centre forwards now at his disposal.

Aulas told Le Progres: "I wanted to sign him [Giroud]. But Arsene Wenger would not sell him. We still have superb young attackers."

After failing with Giroud, Lyon instead turned their attention to 23-year-old Mariano Diaz, bringing the striker in from Real Madrid, also signing versatile attacker Bertrand Traore from Chelsea.

While Lacazette is expected to be Arsenal's first choice striker after being given the number nine shirt, while Giroud and Danny Welbeck will hope to be his competition with Lucas Perez's future at the club still uncertain.

Having blocked Giroud's potential move to Lyon, Wenger believes the France international is now content to remain at the Emirates Stadium and fight for a first-team role.

"Giroud fancies the competition," the Gunners boss said. "As a manager, you have him on your back, wanting to play. He fights hard. I like the way he responds to what is happening. He is focused and determined and showed that on this tour."

Giroud was limited to just 11 Premier League starts last season with Wenger opting to select Alexis Sanchez as his first-choice centre-forward ahead of the France international. Despite that, the Frenchman finished the league campaign with a healthy return of 12 goals, notching 16 in all competitions.

Olivier Giroud
Giroud expected to remain in north London. Getty Images