Date:Sunday May 25 2014
David Luiz is no ordinary footballer.
He has a character and presence rare amongst modern footballers.
With Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole being released, Chelsea are in need of leaders and David Luiz would have provided that leadership. His enthusiasm, joy and passion are second to none amongst the Chelsea playing staff. Obviously you don't play players based on personality alone, but David Luiz is also an unbelievable talent. Barcelona wouldn't come knocking if he was simply an error prone centre back as many imagine him to be.
Some of his performances this season in the holding midfield role have been sublime. His performance against Manchester City, where him and Matic completely shut down the most potent attack in the country is the perfect example of this. I felt the combined talents of those two players, along with Mourinho's managerial skill would be a deadly force. The energy of Luiz is unbelievable and his ability to spread the play shows how multi-dimensional his game is.
Off the pitch, David Luiz is a caring, passionate and emotive human being. You only need to follow him on Instagram or Twitter to see what a lovely character he is off the pitch. John Terry, Petr Cech and Frank Lampard are all Chelsea heroes but none of them have the warm character of Luiz. I am instantly suspicious of any Chelsea fan who doesn't love the colourful personality of Luiz wholeheartedly.
How can you not love a player who instagrams pictures of him and his mum with the #geezers? Luiz clearly cares deeply about those around him, and this has been recognized by none other than the United Nations who have appointed him a good will ambassador.
There are few characters in football like David Luiz and that makes him a priceless asset. He is flamboyant, enthusiastic and passionate both on and off the pitch. There is no doubt that there are more disciplined players and more reliable players. In a world where the gulf between footballers and fans is wider than ever, Luiz is a reminder that footballers are human to. They make mistakes, but unlike many other players with Luiz you can tell there is a genuine desire to make up for it.
One second Luiz may give away a penalty but then he will do everything in his power to rectify it. You will see him in every area of the pitch not because he is ill disciplined but because he cares. He cares so deeply about the game that he is often perceived as a footballer being controlled by a ten year old on a Playstation.
My suspicions and dislike for Chelsea fans who don't appreciate the talents of David Luiz extend to Jose Mourinho. I am sure Mourinho will buy a reliable, astute player to replace David Luiz, but one thing is guaranteed and that is the character and presence of Luiz is irreplaceable. Luiz is an entertainer and that doesn't really fit in with the Special One's mould.
The Special One too used to be a flamboyant entertainer, but recently he appears to be more reminiscent of a boring, dry school teacher. Not tolerating any uniqueness or individuality, encouraging his students to fit a certain conservative mould. With the way things are going it wouldn't surprise me to see every entertaining player at Chelsea shipped out and replaced with more talented but equally as mundane John Obi Mikel's.
Mourinho said you could win a Champions League with eleven Cesar Azpilicueta's, that is hard working players who keep their heads down and do a job. I agree with Mourinho that you need those kinds of players, but every team needs one David Luiz. The likes of Azpilicueta and Matic will give their all on the pitch, but when push comes to shove they can't lift a team like Luiz can. They can't endear themselves to the fans in the same way. Luiz may give away the odd penalty but he gives his whole heart and soul to the cause.
While some Chelsea fans may be happy to see the back of him, there will be others like myself who are devastated to see such a character and talent leave Stamford Bridge.
Date:Sunday May 25 2014
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