Luiz completes PSG move

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iol spt june13 Luiz

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Brazil defender David Luiz has completed his big-money move from Chelsea to Paris-Saint Germain.(Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

London - Even in the cosmopolitan world of European football, with players of a dozen nationalities on the books of a single club, coaches can see advantages in pairing compatriots which is why Chelsea have sold David Luiz.

Manager Jose Mourinho is happy to stick with English centre backs John Terry and Gary Cahill and allow Brazil World Cup defender Luiz to link up with fellow countryman Thiago Silva in the Paris St Germain defence.

The Ligue 1 champions announced on Friday that the player had signed a five-year contract with them.

According to media reports, the transfer fee is a world record for a defender, between 40 ($67.16 million) and 50 million pounds, beating the 36 million PSG paid for Silva in 2012.

Chelsea, moving closer towards breaking even, can now give Portuguese Mourinho funds towards the new striker he covets, likely to be Atletico Madrid's Diego Costa.

Luiz, 27, is equally adept at centre half or as a defensive midfielder. His royal blue number four shirt has already been given to new signing from Barcelona, Spain World Cup midfielder Cesc Fabregas.

Rafa Benitez played Luiz in front of the back four during his brief spell as Chelsea coach and Mourinho contradicted an earlier promise by often doing the same.

Playing further forward minimises the danger of conceding a goal from Luiz's occasional rushes of blood to the head, as well as offering more opportunities to utilise his formidable shooting power.

Chelsea supporters still recall one stunning goal from more than 30 metres against west London neighbours Fulham in April 2013. Even when playing in defence Luiz has always loved to burst forward, often risking being caught out of position, although the Brazilian featured alongside Cahill at the back when Chelsea won the 2012 Champions League final against Bayern Munich.

The shaggy-haired utility player, full name David Luiz Moreira Marinho, was a midfielder in his younger days in Sao Paulo before being converted to defence as a teenager with Vitoria.

He was still only 19 when he followed the well-trodden path from Brazil to Portugal in 2007, joining Benfica on loan and then permanently.

Portuguese League Player of the Year in 2009-10, he was rewarded with a step up from Brazil's Under-20 side to the senior squad under Mano Menezes.

In January 2011 he joined Chelsea for a reported fee of 25 million euros ($34.04 million) plus midfielder Nemanja Matic.

Among his final matches for the London side were the two Champions League quarter-final ties against PSG last month.

Chelsea won the second leg 2-0 to go through on away goals, after which Mourinho singled out Luiz's performance - in midfield - describing him as “a monster”.

An expensive monster perhaps but one the Ligue 1 club will be delighted to have on their side. – Reuters


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