David Luiz's Sour Grapes Sets Up Chelsea's PSG Return Leg Perfectly

Garry Hayes@@garryhayesFeatured ColumnistMarch 9, 2015

Associated Press

David Luiz played the role of the jester at Chelsea perfectly. So well, in fact, he earned himself cult status on the back of it.

Now a Paris Saint-Germain player, he's become the jilted lover.

Luiz will return to Stamford Bridge this week as Chelsea and PSG do battle in the second leg of their last-16 Champions League tie.

Rather than feeling sentimental about his time in London, the Brazilian defender has been quick to stoke the flames of what was already promising to be an intense occasion on Wednesday.

"He [Mourinho] is special for you, but not for me," Luiz told L'Equipe (per the Daily Mail).

"I had some great moments at Chelsea and won a lot of titles. I was very happy.

"They are having a great season, defend well and have great players, but above all I know my team. We will try to score there and play like we know how we can.

"We will have a good game plan and implement it the best way possible to achieve a great performance. Both can still qualify."

If it wasn't clear already, Luiz seems to be carrying some baggage around with him on the back of his summer move from Stamford Bridge to Ligue 1.

He's endeavoured at times to suggest he petitioned for a transfer, saying that he refused a contract offer from Chelsea.

PARIS, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 17:  David Luiz of Paris Saint-Germain is watched by Oscar (L), Juan Cuadrado (2L) and Ramires of Chelsea (3L) during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 match between Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea at Parc des Princes on Febru
Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Now his criticism of Mourinho implies something altogether different.

We can criticise the character of the Chelsea boss all we like. There are times when he heightens the negative focus on Chelsea with talk of campaigns against the club and all the rest of it in ways that are not helpful.

It can prove rather tiresome, like that proverbial broken record spinning endlessly on repeat.

But as a manager, it's difficult to suggest Mourinho is anything but his reputation as one of the world's finest.

Mourinho's track record speaks for itself, and after a two-year spell without silverware, he recently got that winning feeling back when Chelsea lifted the Capital One Cup trophy at Wembley.

PARIS, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 17:  Diego Costa of Chelsea clashes with David Luiz of Paris Saint-Germain during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 match between Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea at Parc des Princes on February 17, 2015 in Paris, France.  (Pho
Alex Livesey/Getty Images

That win over Tottenham Hotspur was no fluke, either. Mourinho has added yet another trophy to a long list of previous successes that span Portugal, England, Italy and Spain.

In many ways, it's his most impressive trophy, too, lifting it with a team that he has built.

When Mourinho first arrived at Chelsea in 2004, everything was ready for success. It was the same in Italy with Inter Milan and in Spain with Real Madrid.

This Chelsea side is very much Mourinho's team, however.

When he returned to Stamford Bridge, the Chelsea boss had to trim the fat from the squad he inherited—one that was unbalanced after years of instability.

PARIS, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 17:  John Terry of Chelsea and David Luiz of Paris Saint-Germain shake hands prior to during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 match between Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea at Parc des Princes on February 17, 2015 in Paris, Fr
Clive Rose/Getty Images

Mourinho has fixed that problem, with players such as Luiz replaced by those of more substance—namely Kurt Zouma.

Top of the league, a trophy already in the cabinet—it's difficult to argue Mourinho's plans are not working.

It's what we've seen this term which is why the Special One moniker doesn't grow old with Mourinho.

Luiz's comments are on the contrary, and it's revealing when he suggests Chelsea will not go out to win the game on Wednesday, saying how PSG "will play like we know we can."

That said, it's rather comical, especially given how Laurent Blanc lined his team up for the first leg at home with three central defenders to counter the threat of Diego Costa and Eden Hazard.

PARIS, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 17:  Jose Mourinho manager of Chelsea shakes hands with David Luiz of Paris Saint-Germain after the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 match between Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea at Parc des Princes on February 17, 2015 in Paris,
Alex Livesey/Getty Images

And credit to the PSG boss as he largely got what he had wished for, despite the 1-1 draw.

Sure, it's all jesting, but coming from Luiz, there seems to be an underlying feeling of regret—one player frustrated that he was ousted from a club where he was happy, all because he didn't fit into the manager's plans.

Mourinho has made this Chelsea a far stronger proposition than the team Luiz featured in.

Indeed, without Luiz at all, Chelsea are far stronger than they have ever been.

Criticise Mourinho the man, sure, David, but the coach? Now that's just sour grapes.

Garry Hayes is Bleacher Report's lead Chelsea correspondent. All quotes were obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted. Follow him on Twitter @garryhayes

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