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David Luiz revelling in new role in Chelsea's tableChels

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of the Premier League for the first time since lifting the title 18 months ago. And David Luiz can take a bow for his remarkable turnaround from Sideshow Bob clown act to solid linchpin of Antonio Conte’s back-three revelation. The Brazil centre-back’s first spell at the Blues was highlighted as mu

ch by his cartoon-character hairdo and defensive calamities as it was by the odd sensational goal. But since boss Conte switched his formation to 3-4-3, Chelsea have won six in a row without conceding a goal. Middlesbrough vs Chelsea: Best pictures Middlesbrough v ChelseaView gallery And Luiz showed once again in Sunday’s

1-0 win at Middlesbrough that he is now Mr Dependable, thriving at the heart of the back three, with Cesar Azpilicueta and Gary Cahill either side of him. Luiz, 29, said: “I just try to do my best and it does not matter which position I play. “I think everyone understands well the philosophy, so that’s why we are doing well. Read MoreRelated ArticlesAntonio Conte hails Diego Costa as one of the worlds best strikers after netting Chelsea winner at Middlesbrough “The spirit is amazing and when you have this teamwork and spirit it makes the difference, so I’m happy to be part of this family.” Deadline-day signing Luiz has featured in all six of the Blues’ wins and has been key to their half-dozen successive shut-outs. Conte’s claims that he can turn Luiz into a top defender no longer look fanciful. Luiz is not getting carried away by Chelseas storming start (Image: Getty) And neither does a genuine Chelsea challenge a season after their nightmare title defence. Luiz added: “It is the first time in the season that we are top of

the league, but we have to understand it is just the beginning. “We have done an amazing job, but we need to keep our feet on the floor because every game is tough. “It’s important we finish top. We are happy to be first now, but it’s too early to speak about and it’s important to finish top after the fi

nal game of the season. That’s our goal.” Luiz gets stuck in to Middlesbroughs Alvaro Negredo (Image: PA) Chelsea’s season has been transformed since switching to the new formation midway through their 3-0 defeat at Arsenal in September. And Conte could have another option for his back-three after Kurt Zouma continued his recovery from a serious knee injury with his fourth

run out for the Blues’ Under-23s, playing the full 90 minutes in a 3-2 win over Southampton yesterday. John Terry also played, starting his first game for almost a month, alongside Cesc Fabregas and Michy Batshuayi in a strong side. Read MorePremier League weekend: Matchweek 12Man United 1-1 ArsenalPalace 1-2 Man CityEverton 1-1 SwanseaSouthampton 0-0 LiverpoolStoke 0-1 BournemouthSunderland 3-0 HullTottenham 3-2 West HamWatford 2-1 LeicesterMiddlesbrough 0-1 Chelsea10 things we learnedTeam of the week poll loading

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