Steven Gerrard has dropped a huge contract update on one of his Aston Villa players…
Speaking to Birmingham Live, the 42-year-old claimed that there has been “tentative talks” between the club and Douglas Luiz.
The Villa manager also noted the difference between this contract dispute and that of Carney Chukwuemeka, who has since joined Chelsea, saying: “It’s very much different. I think Douglas has had a real positive pre-season. I think he’s happy at Aston Villa.”
Although it is an understated claim from the manager, the news that there are simply talks ongoing to try and tie down the Brazilian will be pleasing for Gerrard.
The 42-year-old has been vocal in his praise for the midfielder ever since Dean Smith’s dismissal last November, calling him “a fantastic player, really talented” and one who he rates “extremely highly”. We want to keep all of our best players around. and many have praised the manner in which Gerrard has got a tune out of the 24-year-old at Villa Park.
Former Premier League striker Kevin Campbell said of the duo’s relationship: “Luiz has always been a brilliant player. He is shining under Gerrard because there seems to be more onus on him. Gerrard knows the position inside out.
“He probably watched him in training and said, ‘Listen, I expect a little bit more from you.’ Luiz is doing it which is great.”
Previously labelled a “fantastic talent” by 90min’s Graeme Bailey, Luiz featured in 34 of Villa’s 38 league games last season, offering up a respectable five goal contributions from his deep midfield role.
The hard-working maestro was also solid defensively for the Villans, with one interception and 1.7 tackles per game highlighting him as an integral all-rounder for the team. Those averages put him in the top six in Gerrard’s squad for both metrics in 2021/22, marking him out as a crucial presence at the club.
To lose a player of his quality and importance for a reduced price or even on a free transfer due to contract disputes would be a massive shame for Villa.
Gerrard clearly thinks highly of the midfielder going by the aforementioned quotes and the 24-year-old’s regular presence in the team, and the manager will hope that the ongoing contract talks are successful given how he needs the Brazilian’s steel in midfield.