Filipe Luis hailed Leicester City stars Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez ahead of the Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid, comparing them to Chelsea duo Diego Costa and Eden Hazard.
The Brazilian left-back is expecting a tough evening at the Vicente Calderon on Wednesday night in the first leg of the quarter-final, insisting Atletico have to be on red alert against the players that fired the Foxes to the Premier League title last season.
Leicester saw off Sevilla in the last 16 and visit the Spanish capital looking for away goals to take back to the King Power Stadium next week as they aim to prolong their European fairytale.
“Vardy is a number nine so he will play up against Diego Godin [more than me]. He reminds me of Diego Costa. He goes for every single ball. He tries to win the long balls and he also tries to go into the spaces between the lines,” explained Luis.
“He also is good in the air. They also have [Leonardo] Ulloa who played here in Spain. We have to be really focussed on defence in this game because they are really dangerous.
“One of the best players I have ever played against and with is Eden Hazard. When I played with him at Chelsea he was brilliant. But last year I saw Mahrez doing something similar to what Hazard did. If he wants he can be the new Hazard. So it’s going to be a big challenge for me.”
Asked by The Independent where last season’s PFA player of the year Mahrez ranks among the players he has faced, including Gareth Bale and Lionel Messi, Luis said the Algerian was one of the best wingers in the world.
“He is brilliant. He is a player who is capable of anything,” said the 31-year-old.
“One against one he is very good, he is very fast and he can also dribble with his right foot, he can cross and he can shoot with his left so it’s really difficult to play against him.
“I will need to be on my best form, in my best shape to stop him. He is one of the best right wingers in the world right now so it’s not going to be easy.
“Especially because he plays 90 minutes on the right [without letting up] so I have to be really focussed to stop him. It’s going to be a big challenge for me but also for him.”
Leicester lost for the first time under Craig Shakespeare on Sunday, 4-2 against Everton, but Luis thinks that was a strange result for a team who has been tight at the back since the Englishman took over.
“It’s not normal, they have been very solid,” he said. “The coach [Diego Simeone] has prepared everything for us, so we know how to cause them damage. He’s given us the information we need to know how to cause them danger.
“They have very good players, a very solid team that defends very well and actually reminds us of ourselves. A lot of the time we play better against teams that have more of the ball and try to play, but Leicester play like us. We will have to have a very complete game and not let in any goals.”
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