David Luiz Arsenal 2019-20Getty Images

'Luiz is preparing to renew his Arsenal contract' - Benfica can't afford to re-sign Brazilian, says Vieira

David Luiz is "preparing to renew" his contract with Arsenal, according to Benfica president Luis Filipe Vieira, who says his club cannot afford to re-sign the Brazilian ace at the moment.

Luiz joined Arsenal from Chelsea for £8 million last summer, committing to a one-season deal with the option of an extra year after being deemed surplus to requirements at Stamford Bridge.

The 33-year-old has been a fixture in the Gunners' starting line-up in 2019-20, with his experience a key asset for head coach Mikel Arteta.

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Goal has reported that Arsenal have not yet opened negotiations with Luiz over fresh terms, despite the fact he is set to become a free agent at the end of June.

Luiz has openly admitted to holding talks with Benfica over a possible return to the club, but his agent Kia Joorabchian has insisted that the centre-back remains "happy" at Emirates Stadium and that he is likely to stay in north London for another season.

Vieira shares the same opinion as Joorabchian, having been in regular contact with the Arsenal man over his future, and although he would love to see the defender retrace his steps at some point, he admits that Benfica cannot afford his wages.

"I spoke to him again yesterday. We have a father-to-son relationship," the Benfica president told Record

"He was in the car with his agent, preparing to renew his contract with Arsenal.

"He is someone who loves Benfica, but there is something else he is: he is a great professional and has to earn money.

"What he earns is unthinkable for Benfica to pay. If David Luiz comes to a day when he says 'I want to leave here', if he is 35 years old, in perfect condition, we will take David Luiz of course. 

"If he came, it would have to be for a million, but as a father, I would say 'No, David, you’re not coming, don’t be crazy. You have to make money!' 

"When the football is over, nobody goes after him. If he came today, he would have to come under these conditions, otherwise, he could not come."