Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has revealed that left-back Ferland Mendy could not say no when the opportunity to work under Real Madrid manager and France legend Zinedine Zidane arose.
Mendy made the move from Lyon to Madrid a few days ago, with the Spanish club confirming the transfer for a fee of a massive 47 million pounds. He is part of a summer overhaul from the club, having had a very disappointing season where they ended up without any trophies and were nearly 20 points behind Barcelona in the league.
Aulas has now revealed that when the opportunity to work with Zidane was presented to Mendy, there was no way he could have rejected, especially combined with a move to a big club like Real Madrid.
He told Radio MARCA: "He arrived at Lyon two years ago from Le Havre. He started to play for France when he was just 22; his rise has been very quick.”
"Florentino Perez and I are very good friends, and this always influences negotiations," he added. “It was Zidane's request, yes. When he called [Mendy], he couldn't resist. It's up to Zidane to decide! [whether Mendy starts over Marcelo]"
However, the Lyon boss is not concerned with losing the player and has already made his move to sign a replacement for the new season.
"We've signed another player, Heritier Deyonge [from PSV Eindhoven], who has the same characteristics and is a prospect for the future," he continued. "He's Belgian and is 17 years old."