Centre-Back: David Luiz- 2011-2014/ 2016-current
David Luiz was so well liked that Chelsea re-signed him last year to much fanfare from the supporters.
Luiz has also actually improved markedly since coming back to Chelsea and has been a big part of Chelsea’s current title run. Chelsea are of course sitting comfortably at the top of the Premier League.
In his last stint at the club, he was also one of my favourite players to watch, but for the wrong reasons. He wasn’t the most reliable defender ever, and he would continually surprise viewers with his strange actions on the field. As he would, at times, just decide to sprint halfway up the pitch to try retrieve the ball, miss the tackle, and would leave it up to poor John Terry or Gary Cahill to clean up the mess he made.
Luiz did however produce some spectacular moments of defending such as pulling off an acrobatic bicycle kick to clear the goal line or pull off a marvelous slide tackle winning Chelsea the possession. While I was both surprised and pleased that Chelsea got £50m for him after selling him to PSG, I was also disappointed. I loved watching him play and he was always fun to watch to see what he did next.
He was also one of Chelsea’s most funniest players and was regularly the class clown in the training ground.
However, he has returned to Chelsea a better player and most importantly a reliable defender. Somehow, Conte has figured out how to get David Luiz to actually defend while also displaying his more creative Brazilian aspects, that he was previously known for, to his game.
He has racked up 5.5 clearances, 1.1 tackles, and 2.1 interceptions per game this season. His clearances average is higher than any other Chelsea player.
He has finally found out his most effective position playing as the sweeper or ‘libero’ in the middle of the back three at Chelsea. It seems so painfully obvious now in hindsight to play Luiz in a back three, while the other two centre backs can provide cover for him for when he does do the occasional “luiz” and misses a header or a tackle. But, for some reason no coach ever saw that, and continued to play him in a conventional back four, where he would miss a tackle and leave it up to Thiago Silva at PSG or Terry at Chelsea to clean up.
He is on his way to winning his fourth trophy for Chelsea if they win the Premier League or the FA Cup.
Luiz has made 105 appearances for the club so far and he is set to make many more. The 29-year-old is also being touted as the next captain for Chelsea once John Terry leaves.
He previously won the Champions League in 2012, FA Cup, and the Europa League trophy.