Ruud Gullit delivers verdict on brilliant Chelsea defence
By Dominic Toner
Ruud Gullit believes that Chelsea’s three-man defence is bringing the best out of David Luiz.
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte switched to a 3-4-3 formation during a 3-0 defeat against Arsenal and his side have won their last eight league games since
The Blues have completed victories over Manchester City, United and Tottenham in that run and are now regarded as serious title contenders.
The current Premier League leaders have conceded just two goals in those eight games and looked solid at the back
Ex-Chelsea midfielder Gullit claims that Luiz is well suited to the defensive set-up and is well supported by team-mates Gary Cahill and Cesar Azpilicueta.
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“In this 3-4-3 system he (Luiz) is more of a sweeper and makes fewer challenges than Chelsea’s other defenders,” Gullit wrote on BBC Sport. “That suits him more, firstly because he rarely finds himself in trouble so is not in danger of making a mistake, and also because he is the player with the most freedom in that Chelsea team.
“Luiz can bring the ball out or play it forward and he uses it very well, which is so important when Chelsea look to break quickly. Playing him alongside Cahill and Azpilicueta means they have the ideal combination at the back.”
Luis plays in the central role of the defence and looks very comfortable in that position.
The 29-year-old receives great cover and has been able to demonstrate his great ability in possession.
He had his doubters following a return to Stamford Bridge for £34million in the summer, but has looked fantastic and is a main reason behind their title challenge.
England international Cahill has slotted into the left centre-back position and Azpilicueta on the right.
Azpilicueta is a versatile defender and has been switched from a regular left-back by Conte.
The Spaniard is regarded as one of the best one-on-one defenders in the division and his tenacious work makes life very difficult for attackers.
In other Chelsea news, Jamie Redknapp has tipped the club’s youngster to become a regular in the first-team.