Aston Villa head coach Steven Gerrard is eager to hand Douglas Luiz a new contract after fending off a host of bids for the defensive midfielder, according to Sky Sports reporter Michael Bridge.
The transfer window closed at 11pm on Monday and Gerrard, who was appointed as Villa’s head coach in November, will be overjoyed to still have Luiz on the club’s books.
What’s the latest news involving Luiz?
It has been revealed by The Athletic that Villa rejected three January bids for Luiz, including a final proposal on deadline day.
The report suggests Gerrard is eager to hand the Brazilian an extended deal due to him moving into the final 18 months of his current agreement, which is worth £52,000-per-week.
Gerrard has confirmed the club have, so far, failed to open contract discussions despite revealing he has an ‘extremely high’ rating of Luiz.
The Athletic have claimed Arsenal were among the clubs vying for Luiz’s signature in the final days of the transfer window.
It is understood the 23-year-old was on a four-man shortlist of midfield targets compiled by Gunners head coach Mikel Arteta.
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Arsenal’s north London rivals, Tottenham Hotspur, were also mulling over whether to make a late move prior to Monday’s deadline.
It emerged Spurs were readying a £32million bid to test Villa’s resolve, with them looking to take advantage of Luiz’s precarious contract situation, but he has remained in the Midlands.
What has Michael Bridge said about Luiz?
Bridge understands Gerrard will make negotiating a new contract with Luiz one of his priorities now that the transfer window has closed.
The Sky Sports reporter believes the Brazilian is well-liked by the 41-year-old and an integral part of his plans.
However, he has some doubts as to whether Luiz will want to agree fresh terms after it became clear he has caught the eye of Premier League rivals.
Bridge told GIVEMESPORT: “Steven Gerrard wants to give him a new contract, so it will be interesting to see what happens there.”
Why is Gerrard keen to hand Luiz a new contract?
If Villa fail to convince Luiz to sign a new deal, they may be forced into selling him in the summer and the fee they would garner for his services would be far less than what they were offered in recent days.
Luiz has become a key member of Gerrard’s side, starting all but two of the Midlands club’s fixtures since the change in the dugout.
He has also shown he is capable of contributing in the final third of the pitch, despite being deployed as a defensive midfielder, by racking up three assists in 18 matches this season.