Arsenal are keeping a close eye on Aston Villa midfielder Douglas Luiz, 90min can confirm.

The Gunners have been looking for midfield reinforcements all summer and had hoped to get a deal done for Leicester’s Youri Tielemans, but the Foxes have remained resolute in their reluctance to sell.

With the transfer window approaching its end, Arsenal are exploring all their options and sources have confirmed to 90min that intermediaries have contacted Villa about a possible deal for 24-year-old Brazil international Luiz.

Luiz is understood to have rejected Villa’s offer of a new contract and has now entered the final 12 months of his current deal, leading to manager Steven Gerrard admitting that a late departure could be possible.

“I’m not in control of [Luiz staying],” Gerrard said after Villa’s 2-1 defeat to Arsenal on Wednesday, in which the player scored direct from a corner.

“There’s two people, well, more than two people that are in control of that, but I’m certainly not one of them. That’ll be Douglas, his agent and what happens around that.

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“I’d like to keep him, he’s a fantastic player, I’ve made that abundantly clear. We’re not in a position where we need to lose our top players, but at the same time, he’s get a year to go [on his contract] and it’s one of those touchy situations where the club has to do what’s best for the club, not necessarily what’s best for me.”

Villa sources have played down the prospect of losing Luiz but club officials are believed to be looking closely at Wolves’ Leander Dendoncker as a possible replacement for the Brazilian.

At Arsenal, manager Mikel Arteta recently admitted that the club remain in the market for a new midfielder and would be prepared to move if the right player became available – particularly following injuries to Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny.


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