Hazard to stay, Chelsea to lose defender to Arsenal & others

Chelsea lost the race to sign Virgil van Dijk as the Dutchman went on to sign for Liverpool in the world-record fee for a defender of £75million, but will also be looking to bolster their squad as they set to navigate multiple cup competitions in the next couple of weeks – including a crucial Champions League run with Barcelona.

Arsenal in for Luiz?

Arsenal have emerged as unlikely contenders to throw a lifeline to Chelsea outcast David Luiz, whose relationship with manager Antonio Conte have recently turned sour.

The Express report that Luiz has been phased out of the Chelsea first-team and will be looking to get his career back on track with a move to Arsenal, especially as he wants to contend for a spot in the Brazilian squad that travels to Russia next summer.

The Gunners’ defence have been a cause for concern all season with the extended injury sustained by Nacho Monreal. Laurent Koscielny seems restless and too aggressive at times at centre-back, and needs a calm and composed partner to ensure stability at the heart of the Arsenal defence.

Luiz was dropped by Conte in late October before being out with a knee injury, but has since returned to training and could feature in Chelsea’s FA Cup tie against Norwich. It remains to be seen, however, if Chelsea would be willing to sell to a direct Premier League rival. Juventus are also reported to be interested in the player.

Madrid to end interest in Hazard

Marca are reporting that Real Madrid are to shelve their plans to sign Chelsea ace Eden Hazard in order to prioritise the growth and development of Marco Asensio.

Following reports that the Belgian international had snubbed a new deal at Stamford Bridge, Real Madrid had been reported to register significant interest in the player. Now, however, the European champions are set to cool their interest in the influential playmaker as they prefer to focus their attention on Asensio. They feel that the coup of Hazard would limit the playing opportunity of a home-grown Spanish star.

The 21-year-old has delivered when called upon by manager Zinedine Zidane, with four goals and three assists from ten starts and nine appearances off the bench.

Courtois to Real Madrid?

Eden Hazard isn’t the only Chelsea player on Real Madrid’s mind, as the club are interested in goalkeeper Thibault Courtois.













Spanish outlet Diario Gol claim Courtois has an agreement in place with the club to move at the end of the season (via the Daily Star).

They report that the Belgian goalkeeper has been a target for the La Liga champions with a view to replace Keylor Navas come the end of the season. Real Madrid had initially been keen on the pursuit of Manchester United shot-stopper David De Gea, who has arguably been having one of his most impressive seasons at Old Trafford, though has decided to put their efforts in signing Courtois instead.

Courtois has been in fine form for Chelsea this season, registering 11 clean sheets so far.

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