The Athletic’s Gregg Evans has revealed that Aston Villa were open to selling Douglas Luiz in the summer transfer window.
Reports over the course of the summer suggested that Serie A giants AS Roma were interested in signing the Brazil international, but a move failed to materialise.
Now, Evans has delivered an update on what went on behind-the-scenes at Villa Park.
He said: “They expected more interest in Douglas Luiz, too. Strong messages that Manchester City were ready to activate a buy-back clause found their way to members of the Villa hierarchy, and for some time they were preparing for such an outcome.
“Villa were also open to moving Luiz on elsewhere and at the right price, but there wasn’t enough interest. Roma continue to be linked with Luiz and if they come in strong during the January window, Villa will be in a good position to get a higher transfer fee should his form remain at this high level.”
Then, in response to a question from a fan, Evans added: “Multiple sources confirmed that Villa would have listened to offers for Luiz at the right price. They would have had to move on a midfielder if Ward-Prowse arrived.”
While last season was a bit of a difficult one for Luiz – as per Whoscored, his average match rating of 6.67 was only good enough to rank him 15th in the entire Villa squad – his start to the current campaign has been outstanding.
In fact, his average rating of 7.08 is the best of any Villa player, and he continues to be a cornerstone of Dean Smith’s midfield. – last year saw him play 33 out of the possible 38 Premier League games last term, as the Midlands club finished just outside the top ten.
As Evans himself suggests, given the kind of “high level” his form is at right now, it would surely be ludicrous from Villa to be selling him in the January transfer window, even if his market value would be at its highest.
In fact, in a recent poll done by FFC, 73% of Villa fans who answered said that they would not sell Luiz this summer (1180 votes to 66) – an indication of just how concerning it would be were the Brazilian to make the move to Roma or somewhere else.
Evans’ latest update is sure to have Villa fans worried about Luiz potentially making an exit in January.