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David Luiz to leave Arsenal at end of season

18:00 BST 14/05/2021
David Luiz Arsenal
The Gunners defender will move on a free transfer once his contract expires at the end of the season

David Luiz will leave Arsenal at the end of the season.

The Brazilian defender has spent the past two years at Emirates Stadium after joining from Chelsea in 2019 for £8 million ($11m).

But this will be his final campaign in north London, with the centre-back to move on a free transfer in the summer.

What’s the latest?

Arsenal held a meeting with Luiz and his representative on Friday at the club’s London Colney training centre.

The discussions centred around the defender's future, with his current contract set to expire at the end of the season.

Luiz, who is currently injured, indicated during the meeting that he wanted to move on and Arsenal agreed that it was best for both parties if they went their separate ways.

Is Luiz leaving on good terms?

Yes. Everyone at Arsenal has huge respect for Luiz and admiration for the way he has carried himself since joining from Chelsea.

Arsenal thanked Luiz for his contribution during Friday’s meeting at the training ground, but Mikel Arteta and the club’s hierarchy believe the time is right to look to the future.

William Saliba, who joined Nice on loan in January, is due to return in the summer and the 20-year-old centre-back will be given an opportunity to stake a claim for a first-team spot.

Where could Luiz go now?

The 34-year-old has always said he would like to return to former club Benfica before he retires.

"My dream is to end my career at Benfica,” he said in May 2020. “When, I don't know, but it will happen ... it will, if President [Luis Filipe] Vieira allows me and if the fans want me to come back.

"It will be one of the most beautiful moments of my career."

But it is believed there is also strong interest in Luiz from several Major League Soccer clubs, with some reports suggesting David Beckham is keen on taking him to Inter Miami.

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