Lazio are ready to battle Arsenal Chelsea and Manchester United in the race to sign Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke.

Benteke was a transfer target for the Premier League trio in the summer however turned his back on a deal away from Villa Park by signing a new four-year contract with the club.

Despite this contract extension reports in Italy suggest Lazio will make a move to sign the big Belgian international in the January transfer window.

Lazio boss Vladimir Petkovic is keen to add to his attacking options having sold forward Libor Kozak to Villa in the summer and midfielder Hernanes looking to leave the Stadio Olimpico.

Serie A champions Juventus are also interested in the 22-year-old with Spanish striker Fernando Llorente failing to hit the heights that he set at former club Athletic Bilbao.

The potential moves by the Italians is likely to perk the interest of Arsenal Chelsea and Manchester United who have been keeping tabs on Benteke's situation.

Chelsea failed with a £20m offer to land Benteke in the summer and Villa are likely to command a large fee to prevent their star man leaving in the new year.