David Luiz transfer nears completion as Benfica announce negotiations with Chelsea

27 January 2011 12:54
Chelsea are on the brink of completing a deal for defender David Luiz after Benfica revealed only the finer points of the deal are being haggled over.

A statement from the Portuguese side revealed they had received an offer from the Blues, suggesting it was only a matter of time before the deal was concluded.

The statement said: 'A negotiation process is currently ongoing and the market will be informed when it is completed.'

David joins Goliath: Benfica defender David Luiz will set Chelsea back £26m

Following the release, local media claimed a fee, believed to be around £26million, had been agreed during a meeting in London on Saturday. Only differences over payment installments remained to be sorted.

Benfica's hard stance had threatened to derail a transfer that has been rumbling on since the summer. The Lisbon club were unhappy at Chelsea's attempts to include fringe players such as Paulo Ferreira and Nemanja Matic in a part-exchange deal.

The 23-year old centre-back played a full part in training near the team hotel on Wednesday and featured throughout a 2-0 cup win last night against Rio Ave.

International class: Luiz is considered one of the most promising defenders in world football

Luiz has a contract with Benfica that runs until 2015 and is one of the most promising defenders in Europe.

He arrived in Lisbon from Brazil in 2007 and was a key member of the Benfica side that last season clinched the Portuguese Premier League title for the first time in five years, missing only one of 30 league matches.

His performances earned him a call-up to the Brazil squad for a friendly against the United States in August. He also played against Iran and Ukraine in October and is in the squad for the Feb. 9 friendly in France.

Reinforcements: Carlo Ancelotti has pursued Luiz since the summer

Former Everton and Liverpool defender Abel Xavier is in no doubt he would prove value for money, after catching the attention of several leading clubs in the Barclays Premier League over the past two seasons.

'I had a great time in English football,' he said. 'I know what it is all about and what the demands are, and I have no doubt that David would be a great success at Chelsea.

'First of all, he is a very good defender, but he is also comfortable on the ball and would contribute a lot, in terms of turning defence into attack.

'He is still young, too, and will carry on improving and developing, as he gains more experience. I think he will prove a great asset for Chelsea. He is just what they need.'

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Source: Daily_Mail