Former Manchester United midfielder Roy Keane is well-renowned to take no prisoners when he’s sat in the punditry seat. In fact, when he’s sat in any seat. The latest victim to come under fire from the rough-and-tumble Irishman is Chelsea’s David Luiz.
Keane made a ruthless assessment of the Brazil international and labelled him “lazy” after he conceded a penalty in their Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid, which Antoine Griezmann converted, just minutes before the interval.
“It’s madness really. It’s a form of cheating,” he told ITV. Why he’s doing it is beyond me. He’s lazy and he’s letting his team-mates down. He knows himself. There’s no need. We see a lot of that going on, so I’m glad he got punished for it. It’s a form of cheating.”
Keane did not stand alone in his evaluation of the incident and was supported by former United team-mate Rio Ferdinand. Ferdinand told BT Sport: “David Luiz has left himself and his team-mates down here. You see he’s the wrong side, he knows he’s the wrong side and he gets a handful of the shirt and the referee is in a great position. He doesn’t even protest.”
Antonio Conte must understand by now that with Luiz, who is bold by nature and often reflects this in his play on the pitch, potential errors come with the territory. The man he re-signed for Chelsea for £35 million in the summer of 2016 had looked a transformed player under Conte last season and added a certain reliability and an unwillingness to take as many risks to his game.
Something that Conte valued, but it seems the unruly centre half has allowed his erratic ways to creep back into his game as this is the second time in a matter of weeks he has let his team-mates down following his needless red card against Arsenal in the Premier League. Former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard emphasised this and echoed the notions of Keane and Ferdinand.
“It’s the second time in a week he has let his team-mates down (after) getting the sending off at Stamford Bridge last week. This is a moment of madness at a time when Chelsea were totally dominating this game and looked likely to make the first breakthrough,”he told BT Sport.
Fortunately for the Chelsea defender, though, this is the second time in a matter of weeks he has made a glaring error but it has not ended up a costly one. Conte will certainly consider himself lucky his side managed to overturn the one-goal deficit and earn a vital victory. Especially considering getting the lead and then defending it is what Atletico do best.
But as the Italian manager reflects on an overall positive night he will undoubtedly be concerned by Luiz’s recent displays and will need him to improve and stop making so many mistakes, or on another day it could prove much more disastrous. – Daily Mail.