Report: Aston Villa set to offer reported Arsenal and Liverpool target Christian Benteke bumper new deal

The club are said to be prepared to offer the Belgian striker £75,000-per-week in a bid to keep him at Villa Park this summer.

Aston Villa are preparing to offer Christian Benteke a new £75,000-per-week deal in order to ward off interest from the likes of Arsenal and Liverpool, according to the Daily Mail.

Benteke, 24, finished the 2014-15 season with 12 goals in the final 13 games to help Villa secure both Premier League survival and a place in the FA Cup final, but his impressive form has led to growing rumours regarding his future.

Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester United and Atletico Madrid are all claimed to be after the Belgian striker, who manager Tim Sherwood revealed ahead of the weekend’s cup final has a “quite substantial” release clause – believed to be £32.5 million.

Speaking toSky Sports before the 4-0 defeat to Arsenal, Sherwood said: "There's a buy-out clause in his contract so it will be impossible for us to stop him if he wants to go.

"Someone's got to meet that buy-out clause and if they don't, it won't be considered because we don't want to lose him.”

According to the Mail, though, Villa will now look to remove that clause or at least raise it before summer bids come in with fresh terms which would see Benteke receive a 50 per cent increase on his current £50,000-per-week deal – set to expire in 2017.

With Liverpool reported to be his likeliest destination, the in-form forward is said to be keen on a move to Anfield but, with the prospect of a pay rise and guaranteed first-team football, Sherwood believes he can convince his star man to re-sign.

Quoted by the newspaper following the Gunners thrashing, the Villa boss said: “I will have a chat with him. I have told him that I want him to stay. I’m not sure what his plans are, he didn’t tell me either way. We just tried to get the final out the way.

“We need to offer him a new contract, which the club are prepared to do, and he needs to sign it. When he does we know he’s not going anywhere.

“I think it is right to talk to him about the speculation and we need to put it to bed. I put it out there he’s got a buy-out clause. If no-one meets that, he won’t be going anywhere. I want him to have a good season and score at the same ratio he did when I came here.”

Benteke himself declined to discuss his future following the final, in which he failed to make an impact, but did tell AVTV that he was looking forward to a more successful 2015-16 campaign.

“Next season we will try to do better than this season,” he said. “We can look forward and try to build something strong.”

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