Luiz to fight for place
David Luiz admits he will have to work hard to establish himself as a regular starter for Chelsea.
Last Updated: 03/02/11 4:58pm
Chelsea newcomer David Luiz has insisted he is ready to be thrown into the fray immediately against Liverpool, but admits he will have to work hard to establish himself as a permanent fixture in the starting XI.
The Brazilian defender finally completed his protracted move from Benfica just before the transfer window closed on Monday night for a fee in excess of £20million.
He sat out the 4-2 victory over Sunderland the following day but has told Carlo Ancelotti he feels fit and raring to go for a debut this weekend when the Reds visit Stamford Bridge.
"I hope I can play quickly, and I feel 100 per cent to play tomorrow if I need to," said the 23-year-old.
"I want to help the team in whichever way Mr Ancelotti wants me to do, wherever in the team. As long as I am on the field, I am happy.
"I am most comfortable in the centre but can play on the side also."
Luiz's versatility could help his bid for a regular starting spot but he recognises it will be difficult to get ahead of players such John Terry and Branislav Ivanovic in the pecking order, while Alex is also closing in on a return to fitness.
"I always knew there would be competition because Chelsea is a big club and you have to be a top player to play here," he said.
"It is a big challenge for me, but I have a strong desire to get a space in this group and establish myself and learn from my new team-mates to become a better player and have more skills.
"The best league in the world is the Premier League, so I am so happy to be here playing with and against big players.
"All great players want to play against other great players, and I hope this is my time."
Luiz's arrival was overshadowed by the signing of Fernando Torres from Liverpool in a £50million deal, which came similarly late on deadline day.
And Luiz admits he is delighted to potentially be lining up alongside Torres on Sunday rather than against him.
"He is difficult of course because he is a big player," Luiz, who faced Torres in the Europa League last season, told Chelsea's official website.
"So now I am so happy that I can play in the same team as him and not against him."
There have been a couple of familiar faces at Chelsea to welcome Luiz into his new surroundings, with Alex and Ramires fellow Brazil internationals.
He knows Ramires particularly well because the midfielder spent last season at Benfica.
"I talked with him a lot of times before my transfer and Ramires always said he hoped I would come here because it is a special place and he would be happy if I came here," Luiz said.
"I have known Alex for a long time. I have a lot of admiration for him, I like his football and his personality, and obviously we have both played in the national team, so he is somebody who I know well."