David Luiz received some high words of praise from former Italy and Chelsea striker Gianluca Vialli who said that the Brazilian is the best free-kick taker in the Premier League. This bold statement came after Luiz hit the post on one occasion and forced the goalkeeper to make a save on another when Chelsea met Leicester City at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
The Blues cruised to a 3-0 win over the defending champions with David Luiz’s display on the pitch attracting the attention of many fans and pundits.
The maverick Brazilian struck a sensational free-kick in the 27th minute from 30 yards rattling the woodwork as Kasper Schmeichel struggled to make ground. David Luiz then had a very ‘David Luiz’ moment where he tried an audacious bicycle kick from a very narrow-angle to goal but failed to connect.
Luiz’s second instance of sublimity with the dead ball came in the 41st minute where a driven shot was saved by the Leicester goalkeeper who could only parry it into his own box. The chance died, however, with no Chelsea man capitalising on it.
Gianluca Vialli, as a result of these stunning attempts, went on to say that Luiz is currently the best in the business in England. He said: “David Luiz is the best free-kick taker in the Premier League. He hits the ball so strange.”
Chelsea fans have been accustomed to watching the Brazilian’s free-kicks involving long run-ups and dipping shots which, when connected properly, results in an almost unstoppable shot for the keeper. Luiz had said in an interview a couple of years ago that he learnt the technique from club legends Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard and no wonder he is on his way to perfecting it.
However, the quote from the former Chelsea legend might seem a little harsh on other impeccable free-kick takers in the Premier League, a list which includes Dimitri Payet, Philipe Coutinho, Christian Eriksen and fellow Chelsea mate Willian, who themselves are capable of striking a mean shot on goal from dead ball situations. He just might be a very big David Luiz fan.
Luiz was signed this summer by Antonio Conte on deadline day after Chelsea failed to secure their first choice transfer targets. Luiz, whose defensive capabilities have often been questioned, returned to Stamford Bridge after spending three seasons at Paris Saint-Germain. If he can strike some more of these neat free-kicks regularly and keep up with his defensive responsibilities, it won’t be long before people do actually consider him the best free-kick taker in the league.