Memphis Depay handed No 10 shirt by Lyon in hint he may stay

‘He wouldn’t take it if he was leaving’: Memphis Depay handed No 10 shirt by Lyon as fans interpret switch from No 11 as a hint he will stay at the French club amid interest in £28m Dutch winger from Barcelona and AC Milan

  • Depay wore the new shirt number in Friday night’s goalless draw with Nimes
  • Lyon fans believe his switch from No 11 is a sign he will stay with the club
  • Barcelona and AC Milan have been linked with the Holland international winger
  • But Barca boss Ronald Koeman has been told players must be sold first 

Lyon fans are optimistic Barcelona and AC Milan target Memphis Depay will stay at the club after he was handed a new shirt number.

The Dutch forward wore the No 10 shirt for the first time on Friday night as Lyon’s poor start to the Ligue 1 season continued with a goalless draw at home to Nimes.

New arrival Tino Kadewere has been given Depay’s old No 11 shirt.

Memphis Depay has changed his Lyon squad number from 11 to 10 in a move supporters have taken to mean he won’t be leaving for Barcelona or AC Milan

The Dutch winger wore the No 10 shirt for the first time as Lyon were held goalless by Nimes

Lyon fans interpreted the switch as an indication Depay isn’t on the move, the logic being that he wouldn’t request a change of number if he was planning to leave.

The former Manchester United player, 26, has been linked with a move to Barcelona, where compatriot Ronald Koeman has taken over as manager.

But Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas claimed that his counterpart at Barcelona, Josep Maria Bartomeu, told him they can’t afford Depay’s £28million asking price.

Koeman has been told he must sell players to raise the funds to sign him.

Lyon value Depay at £28m, which is too expensive for Barcelona on their current budget

Depay wore the No 11 shirt for Lyon until Friday night’s game with supporters interpreting the change as a sign he will stay at the club

Lyon fans reacted to the shirt number announcement with delight on Twitter

And Spanish newspaper Diario AS reported that Milan have consequently overtaken Barcelona in the race for Depay.

Stefano Pioli’s side are interested in bringing Depay, who is in the last year of his deal, to the club in exchange for Lucas Paqueta.

Depay has no intent on extending his current deal which expires in July 2021, while Paqueta is currently under control until 2023.

However, the shirt number switch, which comes about with previous owner of the No 10 shirt Bertrand Traore on his way out, suggests Depay could see out the final year.

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