Thomas Lemar was happy to join both Arsenal AND Liverpool, according to Monaco’s vice-president.
Arsene Wenger confirmed he made a £91million bid to land the winger this summer.
And Jurgen Klopp’s Reds failed with an £82m offer.
Monaco chief Vadim Vasilyev revealed: “It was not easy. Thomas wanted to go to Arsenal and to Liverpool, but we had discussions and we took a communal decision so that he could stay here.
“He is a very important player for us. We could not have sold him, it would have affected the entire team and the individuals.”
Monaco’s star-studded squad was raided of Kylian Mbappe, Bernardo Silva, Benjamin Mendy and Tiemoue Bakayoko this summer.
The Ligue 1 champions have spent well on the likes of Keita Balde, Youri Tielemans and Stevan Jovetic but must allow the players time to gel.
Wenger, meanwhile, is still eyeing a January deal for Lemar, 21, who scored twice for France against Holland on Thursday.
He said: “Yes. I think he’s a player who has an enormous availability – he’s always available on the pitch.
“It’s when you realise that he’s always ready to receive the ball, and he’s a very complete, balanced player who can defend.
⚽ EXCLUSIVE OFFER: England now 33/1 beat Slovakia ⚽
FANCY the Three Lions to coast to victory against Slovakia at Wembley?
Well get on Sun Bets’ huge 33/1 (new customers only) for England to win their World Cup qualifier.
“You could see on the goal he scored that he is concerned with quality of the action.
“He didn’t focus on power, he focused on quality, so his action becomes a pure one, because he’s relaxed and at the same time focused on the technical gesture.”