Paris Saint-Germain defender David Luiz has revealed he came close to signing for Barcelona over the summer, meaning he could have been playing against, rather than for, the French giants on Tuesday night.
PSG welcome the Catalan club to the Parc des Princes in a mouth-watering UEFA Champions League Group F encounter, and Luiz will be hoping to make his mark against the club he spurned.
The Brazilian joined Laurent Blanc’s men from Chelsea for a fee that was believed to be £50m, a world record for a defender, but he admitted Barcelona were close to landing him.
“It’s true that they came to feel me out a few times and it looked so good,” he said in an interview with AS. “But eventually I realised that the team that really wanted me and bought me was PSG.”
Luiz, who can also play in midfield, is aware that PSG have made a below-par start to the defence of their Ligue 1 title, with three draws in their last four matches leaving them five points behind leaders Marseille, but is optimistic the capital club will hit top gear soon.
“We’re growing over the weeks,” he said. “We have to find a better version of our style of play.
“We know there is much room for improvement and we are aware that is how the big teams think.
“Over the years I’ve learned that if you think you’ve reached the top of the ladder then you are heading for a fall. That’s not a good mentality to have.
“You must be ambitious, with humility, because you can always improve. We are on the right road and PSG will get back to what they were last season.”