Liverpool have reportedly made a £20m bid for Aston Villa midfielder Douglas Luiz, as five clubs vie for his signature.
Luiz has started just one of Villa’s four Premier League games this term following the arrival of Boubacar Kamara.
READ MORE: Five midfielders Liverpool might consider buying before the transfer deadline
Villa boss Steven Gerrard said earlier this month that he’s happy with Luiz and isn’t overly concerned that he has just one year left on his current deal.
Gerrard said: “I think he’s happy at Aston Villa. He’s got a year left. I think there’s tentative talks at the moment that are ongoing. We like the player a lot. We think he’s a big talent.
“He’s at a fantastic age. But we’re also respectful of the player as well, we don’t want to put too much pressure there. But I’m sure there’s tentative talks in the background, so it’s very much different because Douglas has always been all-in and committed and is happy and settled.
“So, he’s someone we’ll see what happens in the coming weeks but talks are probably ongoing and we know his representation extremely well so we’ll see how that progresses.”
But those comments have failed to stop speculation linking him with a move away and The Daily Mail claim Atletico Madrid are readying a bid, while Chelsea, Arsenal and Newcastle are all interested.
And, according to Brazilian journalist Matheus Leal, so too are Liverpool, who have apparently made a £20m bid for the 24-year-old to ease Jurgen Klopp’s midfield woes.
Leal tweeted: ‘Brazilian Douglas Luiz could leave Aston Villa for Liverpool in the final hours of the window.
‘Liverpool have made an offer of £20 million for the midfielder, who welcome the change of team. Aston Villa play hard and look to win a little more.’
Asked again ahead of Liverpool’s clash against Newcastle about a potential move for a midfielder before the end of the window, Klopp admitted they have already been left disappointed with their top target moving elsewhere.
“Look, the situations are the following, we start the season with nine midfielders? I would say nine,” Klopp said.
“And every aspect was everything in, like creativity, speed, excitement because young, stuff like this, technique, fight, runners, whatever you want, it’s all in.
“They all have contracts and then you start a pre-season, or these kind of things. When a player [with] one-year contract, whatever, two-year contract comes and then [says]: ‘I didn’t play often enough last year. Then I want to go’. Then in that moment, he go.
“But the one thing that we push people actively out and tell them: ‘You are cut out now. Yes, it was great what you did until last year but now we don’t like you anymore, go’ and these kind of things. We are not like this, we are not like this.
“So it means we had all different aspects of a midfield game. You all told me or whoever, you are the ones who ask questions obviously then: ‘Do you need another midfielder?’ A 10th midfielder?
“Sure, but we were going for a midfielder but a midfielder decided to go to another club, so that can happen. So in that moment it’s now not just like this: ‘Oh we don’t take him, then let’s see if we can take the other one’.
“Some players are in this moment not available but for us really interesting, so that’s how it is. And now we can make their decision – we bring somebody in where you think: ‘Is it the right one?’ I’m not 100% sure – short term probably yes, long term I’m not 100% sure and what would that mean for the next transfer and all these kind of things, what are all going through the mind. That’s how our life is.”