David Luiz has made a U-turn on his Chelsea future, decides to stay at the club beyond the summer transfer window after declaring his “love” for new manager Maurizio Sarri’s football philosophy and “fun” coaching style.
Luiz was among those players to fall out of favor with Antonio Conte even after playing almost every game in Chelsea’s 2016-17 Premier League-title winning team and, having started only one league match since October, his future was under considerable doubt.
Conte had dropped Luiz after the Brazilian was perceived to have questioned his tactics during a stormy players’ meeting last autumn but, having started both pre-season games under Sarri, the 31-year-old has now decided that he wants to stay.
While also struggling with injuries, Luiz failed to feature on a regular basis during the second half of the season but remained a popular figure at the club. It was expected that the player would leave the club should Conte remain in charge.
“When I took my decision to come back here from Paris it was to win the Premier League and to do something again with Chelsea. I came back to stay here,” he told Telegraph.
Luiz says that the limitations on his playing time last season had ensured that he is now fully rested and free of injury ahead of the new season.
“I had a lot of time to take care of myself, so now I’m 100 percent,” he said.
While speaking on Sarri’s approach, Luiz was quick to add;
“I love this philosophy. We play high, with a lot of possession of the ball in a technical way. He’s trying to help us every single day, double sessions, to learn quickly his philosophy. Play from the back, build from the back, try to help the guys, and try to be in line. A new philosophy always takes time. We are trying to learn quickly.”
Despite the small squad that Sarri has been working with throughout pre-season so far, Luiz has played a key role, starting in both games against Perth Glory and Inter.
The Brazilian has impressed alongside Ethan Ampadu in a central defensive partnership.