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.

Sport
footballLIVE City face Stoke, while Warnock returns to Palace dugout
Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and the Dalek meet
tvReview: Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Arts and Entertainment
books
Life and Style
3D printed bump keys can access almost any lock
gadgets + techSoftware needs photo of lock and not much more
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Inside the gallery at Frederick Bremer School in Walthamstow
tvSimon Usborne goes behind the scenes to watch the latest series
Life and Style
Silvia says of her famous creation: 'I never stopped wearing it. Because I like to wear things when they are off the radar'
fashionThe fashion house celebrated fifteen years of the punchy pouch with a weighty tome
Arts and Entertainment
Gregg Wallace in Summer's Supermarket Secrets
tv All of this year's 15 contestants have now been named
News
i100Steve Carell selling chicken, Tina Fey selling saving accounts and Steve Colbert selling, um...
Life and Style
A picture taken on January 12, 2011 shows sex shops at the Paris district of Pigalle.
newsThe industry's trade body issued the moratorium on Friday
Arts and Entertainment
Could we see Iain back in the Bake Off tent next week?
tv Contestant teased Newsnight viewers on potential reappearance
News
i100
News
The slice of Prince Charles and Princess Diana's wedding cake and the original box from 29 July 1981
newsPiece of Charles and Diana's wedding cake sold at auction in US
Voices
The Ukip leader has consistently refused to be drawn on where he would mount an attempt to secure a parliamentary seat
voicesNigel Farage: Those who predicted we would lose momentum heading into the 2015 election are going to have to think again
Arts and Entertainment
Cara Delevingne made her acting debut in Anna Karenina in 2012
film Cara Delevingne 'in talks' to star in Zoolander sequel
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

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
Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference