Luiz Sets Chelsea New Challenge After Champions League Exit
By Nick Howson | December 7, 2012 1:30 AM EST
Chelsea defender David Luiz says the club must target winning the Europa League after their premature exit from the Champions League at the group stage.
Despite thrashing Nordsjaelland 6-1 at Stamford Bridge, Juventus' win over Shakhtar Donetsk in Ukraine ensured the Serie A champions progressed to the last-16 as group winners leaving The Blues to reflect on being the first Champions League holders to exit the competition at the group stage.
Rafa Benitez's side now drop into the Europa League as a result, but Luiz says that instead of the much maligned competition working as a distraction from Chelsea's league commitments, the club should focus on claiming European silverware.
"We are disappointed, big clubs should be playing in big games," Luiz said. "We won the Champions League last season, this time we are out of the group and it is a little bit sad.
"'It's not a shock, we are fighting with big clubs and the Champions League is not a small competition. Man City came out as well, this is the best [competition] in the world, so you know you need to work hard in every game to qualify.
"The key game was at home to Juventus. We were 2-0 up and conceded two goals, it was a bad game and it killed us in the group.
"It is sad but football is quick and in two days we have another match against Sunderland, so we need to be ready for the next games, not spend three or four days crying. Saturday is a difficult game and we need to win.
"Chelsea need to play in the Champions League every year and we have this in our heads.
"The Europa League is glamorous for me because I don't have this title, so I want to win it. I look now to that, and want to win it."
After their victory in Munich in May, Chelsea began their defence of the Champions League in uncertain circumstances relinquishing a two-goal lead at home to Juventus, a result which was to have a significant impact on their campaign.
Victory over Nordsjaelland following a defeat away at Shakhtar, but the two goals conceded in the win against Donetsk a fortnight later which eventually sealed their fate preceded a hapless loss to Juventus as qualification slipped from their grasp.
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Most Popular Slideshows
- Kate Middleton Suffocated in Kensington Palace, Queen Elizabeth Reported War With The Duchess [PHOTOS]
- Brad Pitt Still in Love with Ex-Wife Jennifer Aniston, Staying with Angelina Jolie for Sake of Kids, Claims Brad's Psychic
- British Style Icon Kate Middleton Fashion Talk With Camilla Parker-Bowles Daughter-In-Law [PHOTOS]
- Transfer News: Manchester United's Possible Transfer Options For This Season
Join the Conversation
- Floyd Sr Already Endorsing Manny Pacquiao vs. Floyd Fight After Anticipated Victory Over Maidana
- Top 10 Highest Paid Tennis Players
- Dallas Cowboys Have Worst Linebackers in History, Tony Romo To Miss Games Again – Gerry Fraley
- Chelsea FC Transfer News: Mourinho's Free-Transfer Ploy On Khedira Working, After Latter Refused To Pen New Real Madrid Deal
- Spanish Super Cup Second Leg Preview
- James Foley Beheading Video Has Play-Acting Portions – Video Experts Say
- Apple iPhone 6 Release Date, iPhone 6C or 6L Anticipation: Three Things Should Matter To New Phone Shoppers
- Upcoming Sony Xperia Z3 With Dual-SIM Support Gets Approved In China; Full Specifications Revealed; Amber-Coloured Xperia Z3 Tipped
- More Nexus 8/Nexus 9 Release Confirmed with More Leaks and Out of Stock Nexus 7 and 10
- James Foley: Release of Beheading Video by ISIS Meant to Attract More Recruits to Join the Cause – Intelligence
- 2015 Ford Mustang: Right-Hand Drive Pony Car To Be Available In Australia Next Year
- James Foley: ISIS Demanded Multimillion Ransom, US Refused To Pay---Reports