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Five Aside

Benitez: Midfield may suit Luiz

Rafael Benitez has said that David Luiz may be more suited to the midfield for the time being, indicating that it could help the player mature and make fewer mistakes at the back.

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Because of the amount of injuries and suspensions Chelsea have suffered in the centre of the pitch of late, the Brazilian has had to fill in there to positive effect.

And, while Luiz did not play in midfield in the midweek League Cup game against Leeds United, the match did effectively sum up the issue. Although he made an error for Luciano Becchio's goal, he later supplied a through ball for Eden Hazard to score.

Indeed, the errors have become the only blemishes in performances that are, on the whole, becoming increasingly important to Chelsea's creativity. Benitez also stated that he did not want to take away the adventurous side of Luiz's game.

He said: "I encourage him to try things. I would be really worried if a player is not trying things in the final third. He's a player who likes to play and wants to help and win. He likes to be seen, to take a risk where it's necessary."

When asked whether it's "safer" for Luiz to play in midfield, Benitez said "it's easier for him".

"At centre-back, you make one mistake and everyone sees," the Spaniard said. "In midfield, it's easier. He likes to play and enjoys keeping the ball, passing the ball and going forward. It's easier for him than centre-back. If he adjusts those things at centre-back, he will be even better."


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