Pep Guardiola has labelled the much-maligned David Luiz an exceptional player ahead of Manchester City's FA Cup semi-final against Arsenal.

David Luiz is set to be offered a new contract at Arsenal as his importance to Mikel Arteta continues to grow despite their indifferent form.

The former Chelsea and PSG defender joined the club for a fee of £8m from their Premier League rivals back in 2019, and has made 64 appearances in all competitions.

Although 33-year-old could leave the club for free in the summer, Arteta has his reasons for wanting the Brazil international to extend his stay in north London.

Following his impressive performance in the win over Leeds on Sunday, Luiz is set to be offered a one-year extension to prolong his stay in England.

The Independent have now reported Arteta’s feelings on the matter, stating that the Spaniard ‘greatly values’ the influence of Luiz in his young side.

They add that Luiz provides a support figure for the likes of Bukayo Saka, Emile Smith-Rowe and Gabriel Martinelli, helping them develop at the Emirates.

Luiz was back in the headlines for the wrong reasons earlier this month after he was dismissed for a foul on Willian Jose of Wolves.

Arteta said of the defender following his red card: “We know the law. For me, it’s not about the decision and what happens in that instant.

“There was a very similar incident, even though David is behind him, against Manchester United.

“It was on the side of the player and that completely changes the angle, the purpose and how much it affects the player’s ability to finish the action.

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