Spanish giants FC Barcelona have submitted an official bid for Chelsea FC center-back David Luiz as they look to strengthen their defense ahead of the upcoming season.
The future of the Brazilian star has been up for speculations this summer with both Bayern Munich and Barcelona reportedly interested in attaining his service. Luiz has improved by leaps and bounds during the second half of the last season under Rafa Benitez, who also used him as a midfielder during his tenure at Stamford Bridge. But Benitez’s departure and subsequently Mourinho’s arrival did initially spark some rumours about Luiz’s future at Chelsea. It was believed that Mourinho isn’t fond of his flamboyant style of play as the Portuguese manager prefers steel and grit over flair.
This was followed by the much talked about bid for Wayne Rooney few weeks ago, where reports suggested that Chelsea were prepared to use Luiz as the part of the deal to sign the England international. But the London club came out with a statement where the categorically denied offering Luiz or Mata in exchange for Rooney. Jose Mourinho has also recently insisted that Luiz is part of his future plans and could become an integral part of the squad under him.
“David has come back with us fantastically and we have to use his quality.
“He has big self-confidence and self-esteem, especially when he comes up from the back with the ball.
“Can he improve defensively? Of course. But it is my job to try always to improve players.” – Mourinho told the press after Luiz returned to squad for the preseason tour.
But the Brazilian will be unavailable during Chelsea’s match with Real Madrid later today as he pulled out of the squad with what is believed to be a hamstring injury.
Bayern Munich have seemingly pulled out of the race for his signature as new manager Pep Guardiola has rubbished rumours linking the Brazilian with a move to the German club.
“He’s not coming to Munich. We’ve got four or five central defenders.
“There is no truth to the speculation.” – Guardiola said.
But recent reports suggest that Barcelona have made their first move for David Luiz. Barcelona’s football director Raul Sanilehi has arrived at London today in order to initial negotiations and has also submitted an official bid believed to be in the region of £35 million. Luiz, who joined Chelsea back in 2011, was signed from Benfica for a fee of £22 million.
Barcelona’s prime target this summer was PSG defender Thiago Silva. With the departure of Abidal and concerns regarding the fitness of Puyol, Barcelona look weak at the back. But the Catalan club were unable to prize away Silva from the French club as Brazilian defender signed a new contract with PSG. The Catalan giants have now turned their attention towards Luiz, who was earmarked as their back-up option, in case they failed to sign Silva.
But the question remains where Chelsea will entertain this bid from Barcelona regarding David Luiz? John Terry is approaching the fag end of his long career, while Cahill and Ivanovic remains the only other experienced center-backs. Chelsea will certainly need to find a replacement for Luiz if they intent to sell him, or their defense might be left exposed by injuries or suspensions.