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Luiz: Europa League win a success


David Luiz's Chelsea take on Fulham at Craven Cottage on Wednesday

David Luiz's Chelsea take on Fulham at Craven Cottage on Wednesday


David Luiz's Chelsea take on Fulham at Craven Cottage on Wednesday

David Luiz believes Chelsea's season will still be a success if they qualify for next season's Champions League and win the Europa League.

The Blues have seen seven trophy opportunities slip by this term after Sunday's 2-1 FA Cup semi-final defeat to Manchester City saw them relinquish their hold on the trophy.

"If you win the Europa League and stay to play Champions League next year of course it's a success," Luiz said. "Some big teams in Europe don't win titles this year, so of course it's a success."

Chelsea have become accustomed to silverware in the 10-year ownership of Roman Abramovich, but earlier this season suffered the ignominy of becoming the first holders to exit the Champions League at the group stages.

But for the second year running Chelsea are the last British team standing in European competition and face Basle, conquerors of Tottenham, in the Europa League semi-final first leg in Switzerland next week.

For now the focus is on Wednesday's match with Fulham, with securing a place in the Barclays Premier League top four the main agenda.

Chelsea sit fourth, behind Arsenal, but the Craven Cottage clash is their game in-hand on Tottenham and victory would see the Blues move three points clear of fifth-placed Spurs, who next play on Sunday. The still-to-be-confirmed meeting with Tottenham - rearranged due to the City semi-final - could conceivably be a play-off for the Champions League.

Chelsea belatedly showed their potential at Wembley in a second-half resurgence and will need to be on top form in the remaining weeks of the season to achieve their goals. The Wembley fightback, after defeat in Moscow to Rubin Kazan, also showed how Chelsea must add depth to their squad to challenge across all competitions next term.

Luiz was focused on the present, rather than the future, though. "This is Chelsea," Luiz said. "When Chelsea want to play football they're just so good.

"We have a difficult competition. This season we want to win everything. Now we cannot win the league, but we can stay in the best position and we can win another European title. Work for that."

PA Media