Aston Villa are set to confirm their eighth signing of the 2019-20 season as they close in on signing Manchester City midfielder Douglas Luiz, for a fee of around £15 million.
BBC Sport are reporting that the Premier League new boys have agreed on a deal for the 21-year-old and are confident of getting a work permit for the Brazilian midfielder, who was denied one last year.
The midfielder spent the last two seasons on loan at Spanish club Girona, where he made 36 appearances in two seasons but hasn’t been able to make even a single appearance for his parent club, Manchester City.
The report also states that Villa will sign another player, centre-back Bjorn Engels of French club Stade de Reims.
Douglas Luiz joined Manchester City from Brazilian side Vasco da Gama, and his contract with the current Premier League champions expires only in 2022. City manager Pep Guardiola is a fan of Luiz, but the work permit issues seem to have possibly forced Manchester City to sell the Brazilian midfielder.
Luiz has represented the Brazilian U20 and U23 side and is currently the captain of the Brazil U23 side.
A shrewd move by Aston Villa?
Villa have strengthened all areas of the pitch apart from central midfield and the signing of Douglas Luiz could add more strength and depth to the side which won the 2018-19 Championship play-off finals.
Luiz is a leader in the middle of the park and is a good organiser of his team. A neat passer, Luiz completed 84.5% of his passes last season for Girona, who had a difficult year, which ultimately ended in their relegation. Luiz is a calm and composed figure in midfield, with or without the ball.
The 5’9″ player is also a good dribbler of the ball with good pace to get away from his marker and the opposition midfield.
Although the stats will not indicate the extent of his talent, Luiz is a player who can be a good fit for Villa, who will need a calm figure in midfield who can boss games and keep the ball ticking.
Villa currently have John McGinn, Conor Hourihane and Henri Lansbury as the central midfield options, and the addition of Luiz could add more options as well as depth to the squad, which is vital to survive in the Premier League.
Stats Courtesy: Whoscored