Cesar Azpilicueta relishing competition from Mourinho's next signing

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Chelsea defender Cesar Azpilicueta is relishing the possibility of fresh competition for his place in the starting line-up.

The Spanish left-back was in top form last season, featuring 40 times in all competitions and cementing his place as manager Jose Mourinho's first choice following Ashley Cole's move to Roma.

Filipe Luis arrived as his replacement, but the Brazilian could not force his way past Azpilicueta in the pecking order and is now set to leave the club. Mourinho confirmed as much yesterday evening, revealing that the 29-year-old was set to leave in the next 48 hours.


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Whilst Chelsea are yet to confirm Luis' exit - with Atletico Madrid the likely destination - 'The Special One' has already stated that he will try and sign a replacement, with Augsburg's Baba Rahman the man in the manager's sights.

Whoever arrives at King's Road, Azpilicueta will be ready and waiting to welcome his new rival to the club, but has vowed to work as hard as possible to maintain his place in the side.

"In football, in a great club like Chelsea and all the top clubs, you have quality players. Every one of us tries to give everything and make it difficult for the manager," he told Sky Sports.

"You have to fight every day for your place so obviously I will have competition as always and I will try my best to work hard to play as much possible."

Despite their rivalry, Azpilicueta insists he and Luis are good friends off the field, and if his move to the Vicente Calderon goes through he'll be keeping a close eye on his progress in La Liga.

"I think when he arrived he gave everything and tried his best," the Spaniard added.

"I know everyone wants to play and we were in healthy competition but we are friends and we don’t have any problems. 

"But they have made a decision and if it is official, I will wish him the best of luck and follow him for sure."

With Luis heading for the exit and a replacement still to be signed, 25-year-old Azpilicueta will expect to start the FA Community Shield against Arsenal at the start of next month, followed by the Premier League opener against Swansea.

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Transfer News
Cesar Azpilicueta
Filipe Luis
Premier League

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