Moussa Dembele reveals why he left Celtic for Lyon

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Moussa Dembele has admitted that the chance to join Lyon and write new history was a major factor in his decision to swap Celtic for the Groupama Stadium.

The Frenchman completed a £19.7 million move to the Ligue 1 side on transfer deadline day, returning to his homeland after spells with Fulham and the Scottish champions.

Moussa Dembele poses with his new jersey at the Groupama Stadium on September 1. Picture: AFP/Getty Images

Moussa Dembele poses with his new jersey at the Groupama Stadium on September 1. Picture: AFP/Getty Images

And the France Under-21 forward has admitted that it was difficult to turn down the chance to join Bruno Genesio’s side after the raft of phone calls and messages he got from the Lyon squad ahead of his move.

Speaking to the French side’s website, Dembele said: “Before signing, I received a lot of messages and calls from the club’s players - they made me come. Lyon is a historic club. 
“There were some very great players, especially attackers. I’m proud to represent this club.”

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Among the great forwards to have pulled on a Lyon jersey in the past few years are six-times capped Brazil international Sonny Anderson, who scored 71 goals in 110 games; Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema, who spent 13 years at his hometown club and scored 66 goals in 148 appearances; fellow local lad Alexandre Lacazette (129 goals in 275 games) and Argentinian forward Lisandro Lopez, who scored 82 goals in 166 matches for Lyon.

Dembele, who played the full 90 minutes of Lyon’s 2-2 draw with Caen, and was a 60th minute replacement for Memphis Depay in Les Gones’ 4-2 win over Marseille this weekend, added: “My choice was already made.

“There is no particular pressure [on me]. Everyone has his destiny, his story. My predecessors did a great job. They have made history. It’s now up to me to write my history.”