According to Starsport, the champions are ready to let Luiz join Arsenal as part of a deal to take badly-needed striker Giroud to Stamford Bridge.And if Giroud does sign, that would release the Blues’ Belgium forward Michy Batshuayi to go to Borussia Dortmund – which would allow hitman Pierre-Emerick Aubamayeng to finally join the Gunners for £55m.Dortmund also want France star Giroud, who Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has valued at £35m – but Chelsea misfit Batshuayi is their first pick.Starsport revealed last month Wenger wanted to bring in Brazil centre-back Luiz, 30, to boost his backline.
He also has had West Brom’s Jonny Evans on his radar but has been unwilling to pay £25m for the Irishman.
Chelsea asked about Giroud after deciding against Roma’s Edin Dzeko due to his wage demands and the length of the deal the 31-year-old wanted.
Talks initially centered on Giroud signing on loan until the end of the season.
But Chelsea have now tried to move the deal along by offering Luiz, having bolstered their own defence with the impending arrival of £25m left-back Emerson Palmieri from Roma.
Luiz is also very much out of favour with boss Antonio Conte after a bust-up with the Italian.In the last three months he has had just 32 minutes of league action for the Blues.In-depth negotiations will be needed over the last two days of the transfer window with Wenger valuing Luiz at around just £15m and Chelsea pricing Giroud at a maximum £30m.But it is thought, despite interest from Marseille in his homeland, Giroud would prefer a move to Chelsea as it means staying in London.
Luiz had been ready to wait until the end of the season as Conte is widely expected to leave Chelsea, with ex-Barcelona boss Luis Enrique his likely replacement.
But if terms can be agreed, Luiz could see Arsenal as a good switch in the build-up to the World Cup this summer.
Whatever happens the Gunners remain confident of signing Gabon international Aubamayeng, who has made it clear to Dortmund that he wants to leave.Meanwhile Arsenal keeper Petr Cech aims to notch up a record 200 Premier League clean sheets tonight at Swansea.The former Chelsea keeper, 35, is bidding to become the first man to 200 clean sheets and insists he has no plans to retire from the game.Cech, currently said: “When you see how many games everybody else needed to get to 200 and nobody ever got that far, you think it is something amazing. I hope it is going to go way longer than 200.”
( DAILY STAR UK)