Barcelona ready to tempt Luiz into leaving Chelsea

£30m-rated Brazilian defender interests Spanish giants while Blues' fifth bid for Wigan's Victor Moses is finally accepted

Barcelona are prepared to test Chelsea's resolve to hang on to their Brazilian defender David Luiz, who is attracting interest from the Spanish club one week before the end of the transfer window.

Luiz, 25, is valued at around £30m by the club, who say in private that they have no immediate plans to sell a player they bought in January of last year. Luiz is injured and missed the Premier League win over Reading on Wednesday night, having first announced he would not be playing on Twitter on the morning of the game.

Yesterday afternoon, he tweeted a photograph of himself on a private plane declaring that he was preparing to fly to Barcelona. He later said he was returning to London. The club maintained he was attending a Nike event in the city and had permission to do so from their manager, Roberto Di Matteo, despite being injured.

Chelsea agreed a fee with Wigan Athletic yesterday for the Nigerian striker Victor Moses, 21, understood to be in the region of £9m, the club's fourth major signing of the transfer window. Wigan announced the agreement followed "four unsuccessful bids" by the European champions and that Moses had permission to negotiate personal terms with Chelsea.

The acquisition of Moses is in keeping with the London club's policy of acquiring what they consider to be the best young talent, including the likes of Eden Hazard, Oscar and Romelu Lukaku, currently on loan at West Bromwich Albion. Although they have tended to pay high fees, the interest Luiz is attracting demonstrates Chelsea buy players who increase in value.

Luiz has divided opinion at the club since he joined from Benfica for a deal worth around £25m. An unorthodox defender who has been prone to make the occasional mistake, he remains popular with the supporters. There is understood to be strong interest, however, in Luiz from Barcelona and there are elements at the club who would regard a profit on the player, who is not a guaranteed starter, as good business.

Barcelona, who played Real Madrid at home in the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup last night, have already signed Alexander Song as an option to play at centre-back. With Javier Mascherano also co-opted into the position from midfield, it is one area in which their options are limited.

Selling Luiz would not necessarily leave Chelsea short on central-halves, with Branislav Ivanovic having told Di Matteo over the summer that he wants to be considered as a centre-back and not a right-back, where he found himself playing for much of last season.

Should Luiz leave the club in the next seven days then it would be more likely Chelsea would seek a right-back to fill the gap left by him rather than sign a centre-back. The Marseilles full-back Cesar Azpilicueta is one candidate regarded as a suitable option. Manchester City have played down suggestions they could be interested in Luiz.

In Luiz's absence on Wednesday night, the England international Gary Cahill scored Chelsea's second goal in a 4-2 win over Reading in a performance that, while promising in attacking terms, did pose questions about the team's defensive discipline.

Cahill said that he took responsibility for not having got sufficiently close to Pavel for Reading's first goal but argued that Chelsea were playing a different, more attacking breed of football. "I certainly wouldn't say we were boring, there was some exciting stuff," he said. "I thought [Eden] Hazard was phenomenal and we looked dangerous. It's exciting to see them boys playing their stuff.

"Yes, maybe because we have got attack-minded players that want to show their flair and ability. Maybe defensively we might be a little bit more exposed. That is something we at the back have got to try to deal with. I don't think you want to stop the way they play because I thought they were fantastic."

David Luiz in numbers

53 Chelsea games for the Brazilian since 2011 move.

12 Brazil caps won by Luiz, since his debut in August 2010 against the US.

£21m Amount Chelsea paid Benfica for the centre-back 19 months ago.

5 Goals scored for Chelsea – most recent versus Bolton last February.

News
people Emma Watson addresses celebrity nude photo leak
News
Katie Hopkins appearing on 'This Morning' after she purposefully put on 4 stone.
peopleKatie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge
News
Boris Johnson may be manoeuvring to succeed David Cameron
i100
News
peopleHis band Survivor was due to resume touring this month
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
News
In this photo illustration a school student eats a hamburger as part of his lunch which was brought from a fast food shop near his school, on October 5, 2005 in London, England. The British government has announced plans to remove junk food from school lunches. From September 2006, food that is high in fat, sugar or salt will be banned from meals and removed from vending machines in schools across England. The move comes in response to a campaign by celebrity TV chef Jamie Oliver to improve school meals.
science
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Life and Style
fashionModel of the moment shoots for first time with catwalk veteran
Life and Style
fashionPart of 'best-selling' Demeter scent range
News
i100
Sport
Tom Cleverley
footballLoan move comes 17 hours after close of transfer window
Sport
Alexis Sanchez, Radamel Falcao, Diego Costa and Mario Balotelli
footballRadamel Falcao and Diego Costa head record £835m influx
Life and Style
fashionAngelina Jolie's wedding dressed revealed
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering