Chelsea £17m David Luiz bid rejected as Manchester City lurk

30 December 2010 05:39
Chelsea have been knocked back in a bid to sign Benfica defender David Luiz for £17million, it has been claimed.

Carlo Ancelotti admitted at the weekend that he could be in the market for a defender to arrest their stuttering form.

Chelsea and Manchester City were both keen on Luiz in the summer, but Benfica insisted they would not sell for anything less than his £43m release clause.

Centre of attention: Benfica defender Luiz turns out against Schalke

The situation has now changed, with the Lisbon giants struggling in the league and Luiz reportedly making it clear he will not sign a new contract to stay beyond 2015.

Alternative: Much-admired Bolton defender Cahill

City had been tipped to meet Benfica's revised £25m asking price when the transfer window reopens next month, but Sportsmail understands a move this winter is unlikely.

Roberto Mancini this week confirmed his admiration of the 23-year-old, but is also pursuing £8m-rated Espanyol defender Victor Ruiz.

Portuguese newspaper Record claims Chelsea have made the first move for Luiz, but Stamford Bridge boss Ancelotti may have to look at other targets - such as Bolton's Gary Cahill - after meeting resistance from Benfica.

Despite having the meanest defence in the Barclays Premier League - conceding 15 in 19 games - Chelsea have recently struggled with injuries to central defenders John Terry and Alex.

They have recorded just two clean sheets in their last 13 games, contributing to a fall from runaway Premier League leaders to fourth-placed title-race outsiders.

 Mancini admits Balotelli is homesick and confirms interest in Dzeko and Luiz I have got money to spend! Chelsea boss Ancelotti targets new defenderCHELSEA FC

Source: Daily_Mail