Arsenal’s out-of-form defender David Luiz needs to feel like “the man” to be at his best.
That’s according to former Chelsea team-mate Ashley Cole, who has urged the Gunners stars to put their arms around the Brazilian to comfort him.
Luiz has been horribly out of form since the restart, suffering two errors and seeing red against Manchester City in their first game back.
Despite being handed a new contract, the 33-year-old still appears to be short on confidence.
But speaking on BBC One ahead of Saturday’s FA Cup final between Arsenal and Chelsea, Cole insists that his old pal is far from finished.
Instead, the ex-left-back has urged the Gunners stars to comfort Luiz to get the best out of him.
“I see why David Luiz gets a lot of criticism,” Cole said. “He’s probably too aggressive sometimes and gets tight to players.
“Is it the lack of leadership around him? Somebody to say, just drop off a bit?
“He needs an arm around him and he needs to feel the man.
“He had that at Chelsea and he’s starting to look like he’s getting that at Arsenal.”
Chelsea manager Frank Lampard made similar comments about Luiz earlier this week, insisting that he would not be targeting his old team-mate.
“I certainly haven’t [targeted him as a weak point],” Lampard said in his pre-match press conference.
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“What I have for David is a real respect, he was a top player in our 2012 campaign, David was a top player within that.
“We’re preparing for Arsenal with him in a team, I know how good he can be and I know what a big player he can be for Arsenal.”