Aston Villa transfer talk as Monchi in Italy, Luiz seeks €40m exit, McKennie and Soulé linked

Juventus winger Matias Soulé.
-Credit: (Image: Timothy Rogers)

Aston Villa transfer supremo Monchi has been in Turin to meet Juventus officials over key summer deals for both clubs, according to media in Italy.

Gazzetta dello Sport claim Villa’s president of football operations has been actively touting midfielder Douglas Luiz for a summer sale. They claim the Brazilian wants “a change of scenery” and could be available for around €40m.

Monchi has been drawn to Juve because “discussion could become much broader, also involving other players, primarily Weston McKennie, whose contract expires in 2025, and maybe even Matias Soulé, who Juve know they have to sacrifice”.

Villa are known to be ready to offload a big-name player as they battle to balance the books within the strictures of the Premier League’s punitive Profitability and Sustainability regulations.

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Luiz, a £14m recruit from Manchester City in the summer of 2019, has been one of Villa’s top performers in recent seasons, and was particularly impressive as they finished fourth last term to qualify for Champions League football.

But with Villa under pressure to sell, an exit for the 26-year-old could be on the cards to help finance Unai Emery’s desire to strengthen his squad ahead of the new season.

Arsenal have long been admirers of the player, and reports in Italy claim Manchester United could also be keen. However, Gazzetta dello Sport reports: “There are many irons in the fire, which is why Monchi, former sporting director of Roma now at Aston Villa, stopped in Turin to meet the Juventus management.

“The Brazilian's contract expires in 2026, he earns between €2.5m and €3m net per season and wants a change of scenery. The English know they won't be able to keep him and don't want to sell him off next summer, so they are moving forward, valuing him at around €40m.”

Villa have shown interest in McKennie before, and the USA international could be available at a competitive €15m with his Juve contract due to expire next summer.

McKennie played regularly in Serie A this past season as Juve finished third behind runaway champions Inter Milan and neighbours AC, playing 38 times in all competitions. He had a disrupted loan spell at Leeds United the season before.

Winger Soule would be more expensive at about €30m, but the 21-year-old Argentine is regarded as one of the finest young attacking talents in European football and could develop into a key player for Villa.

Gazzetta dello Sport adds: “The Birmingham club, which had already shown interest in Federico Chiesa last year, has qualified for the Champions League and is intent on shopping in Italy.

“Monchi also took the opportunity to obtain information on Soulé. He has started looking for a winger, and Villa's interest is concrete.”

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