Football: Gomis blamed as Lyon 'forced to sell' rising star Martial to Monaco

PARIS (REUTERS) - Olympique Lyon blamed France striker Bafetimbi Gomis' refusal to accept a transfer offer for forcing them to sell exciting youngster Anthony Martial to Monaco for five million euros (S$8.25 million) on Sunday.

Lyon, the only French Ligue One club listed on the Paris stock exchange, had to sell at least one player by Sunday to be able to report balanced yearly results.

"Having not been able to complete the move of any player approached for a transfer by June 30, notably Bafetimbi Gomis, the club considered Monaco's offer for Anthony Martial," Lyon said in a statement.

"The club completed Anthony Martial's move for five million euros plus an important share on a future transfer," they added, again taking aim at Gomis who "has not left yet".

President Jean-Michel Aulas said this week he had agreed with three clubs, including English Premier League sides Swansea and Cardiff, over a transfer for Gomis but the player, Lyon's top scorer last season, had turned them down.

Martial, a 17-year-old forward, has played only 50 minutes in three league games so far but has long been tipped for great things following good performances with the youth teams.

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