Manchester City

Manchester City

Premier League • England

Man City transfer news: Guardiola eyes shock winter reunion with star Arsenal ‘hell bent’ on signing

Aston Villa stars Douglas Luiz and Ollie Watkins

Aston Villa stars Douglas Luiz and Ollie Watkins

Manchester City look set to go head-to-head with Arsenal after a report linked them with a January move for Aston Villa midfielder Douglas Luiz.

The 25-year-old has caught the eye over four seasons with the Villans and is enjoying another stellar campaign in the West Midlands. The Brazil international has started all 12 of Villa’s Premier League games this term, scoring five goals. He notched six throughout the entire 2022-2023 season and is on track to smash that number this time around.

With his stock clearly on the rise, it is no surprise that clubs have become interested.

Both Arsenal and Newcastle United have been strongly linked with a winter move for the South American.

The Gunners and Magpies are both in need of midfield reinforcements and Luiz appears to fit the bill.

Trusted transfer guru Fabrizio Romano has given his take on the situation. The Italian journalist believes Arsenal ‘dream’ of talking him to the Emirates.

However, it will not be easy to persuade Villa to let him leave. Unai Emery has turned the Villa Park outfit around since his arrival.

And, following a seventh-place finish last term, they are again mixing it with the big boys.

After Sunday’s win over Tottenham in north London, they have risen to fourth in the top-flight standings.

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Luiz has been a major part of their resurgence over the past 12 months under the Spaniard.

However, the lure of featuring for a club with genuine title ambitions may be tough to refuse.

City eye reunion with Luiz

Luiz was on the Manchester City books for two years after joining from Vasco da Gama in July 2017.

He inked a five-year deal at the Etihad but did not kick a ball for Pep Guardiola’s side.

A loan to Spanish club Girona for 2017-18 was repeated the following season after denial of a work permit.

And he was then sold to Villa after receiving the necessary documentation to play in England.

It has certainly been a success story at Villa Park, with 152 top-flight appearances and 170 in all competitions.

The Rio de Janeiro-born ace has bagged 18 goals to date.

It remains to be seen if he is still at the club after the winter window. Arsenal were said to be keen on both Luiz and Ruben Neves.

But Romano has reported that the north London giants are now solely focused on securing the Villa playmaker.

Football Insider recently revealed that Arsenal are ‘hell-bent’ on landing their target in the new year.

But news of City’s interest may put a sizeable spanner in the works for a player under contract until June 2026.

Guardiola has also been linked with Neves and so it will be interesting to see what happens when the next window opens.

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