Arsenal see second Douglas Luiz bid ‘rejected’ in race against time

Mikel Arteta reviews Arsenal's Premier League win over Aston Villa

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Arsenal have reportedly seen a second bid for Douglas Luiz rejected, with the Gunners facing a race against time to agree a deadline day deal for the Aston Villa midfielder. Arsenal are desperate to bolster their midfield options before the summer transfer window closes, despite storming to the top of the Premier League table after winning their opening five matches of the campaign.

Luiz came face-to-face with Arsenal on Wednesday evening as he came off the bench during the second half of the Villans’ top-flight clash at the Emirates Stadium. And the Brazil international found the back of the net as he scored directly from a corner.

The Gunners came forward with an unsuccessful £20million bid for Doulas on Thursday. And their second bid of £23m plus add-ons was also turned down later in the day, according to talkSPORT.

Douglas is said to be keen on a move to north London after illustrating his talents time and time again in a Villa shirt since joining the club from Manchester City three years ago. And he is thought to have already agreed personal terms with the Premier League leaders.

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But Arsenal will have to stump up more cash to get their hands on their man as his current employers want more than £30m to sanction a move, according to Birmingham Live. The main sticking point appears to be a clause in his contract that will hand the Citizens 20 per cent of any transfer fee as part of a sell-on clause. And that means Villa chief Christian Purslow is pushing for more money.

Douglas failed to make a single first-team appearance during two seasons at the Etihad Stadium. But the 24-year-old has gone on to play 116 times for Villa, bagging seven goals and eight assists for the side.

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Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta handed a rare start to Albert Sambi Lokonga against Steven Gerrard’s team as he lined-up in the centre of the park alongside Granit Xhaka in the wake of injuries to Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny.

And following the match, the Spaniard admitted he was in need of more midfielders and would attempt to delve into the transfer market to bolster his squad. “The injuries have an impact [on the transfer window],” the 40-year-old said. “Suddenly we are short in that position – we are looking at options in the market. If the right player is available we will try to do it.”

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