Chelsea have reportedly joined London rivals Arsenal in the race to sign Aston Villa midfielder Douglas Luiz.
The 24-year-old was the subject of late interest from the Gunners in the closing stages of the summer transfer window, but a move to the Emirates Stadium failed to materialise.
Arsenal allegedly saw three bids, including a final £25m offer, rejected by Villa for the Brazilian on deadline day, with Steven Gerrard‘s side demanding a figure between £30m and £40m.
Luiz’s long-term future at Villa Park remains uncertain as the midfielder has less than 12 months remaining on his contract.
The former Manchester City man will be able to negotiate pre-contract agreements with foreign clubs from January onwards should he decide against penning a new deal with Villa.
A recent report claims that Arsenal are prepared to reignite their interest in Luiz when the January transfer window opens, with Mikel Arteta keen to provide midfield competition for Thomas Partey and Granit Xhaka.
However, Birmingham Live reports that the Gunners are set to face competition from Graham Potter‘s Chelsea in the New Year.
The Blues splashed out in excess of £250m on summer signings, but it is thought that they are looking to bolster their midfield options in 2023, with both N’Golo Kante and Jorginho now into their 30s.
Chelsea co-owner Todd Boehly is allegedly attracted by the prospect of recruiting Luiz for a cut-price fee after spending big over the summer.
Since joining Villa in 2019, Luiz has made a total of 118 appearances for the club across all competitions, scoring seven goals and providing eight assists, but his place in the starting lineup has come under threat this season following the arrival of Boubacar Kamara.
Like Luiz, both Kante and Jorginho will see their current contracts expire in June 2023 and both players have been linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge.
A recent report claims that Kante has turned down a two-year renewal offer from Chelsea, with the 31-year-old Frenchman holding out for a longer-term deal.
Meanwhile, Jorginho is reportedly attracting interest from Barcelona, while a potential return to Serie A has also been mooted for the 30-year-old Italy international.
Kante has only featured twice for Chelsea so far this season due to injury, while Jorginho has made eight appearances in all competitions, including a start in Potter’s first match in charge last week which saw the Blues draw 1-1 with Red Bull Salzburg in the Champions League.