Alex signs new deal at Chelsea with World Cup dream in mind

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The Independent Online

The Brazilian defender Alex has set his sights on realising his World Cup dreams after becoming the second player in as many days to commit his long-term future to Chelsea.

Striker Salomon Kalou signed a three-year deal on Monday and the Blues defender followed suit yesterday by agreeing a new four-year contract.

The Brazilian has been out of action since the start of the season following a groin operation, but he resumed full training this week and had no hesitation in pledging his future to the club for a further four years.

"I am very happy to start again to train and feel no pain, and to sign for four more years," said Alex. "It was easy to decide to sign and now I hope to get back to playing well. My condition now is so-so. I think in two more weeks I am 100 per cent and can play without a problem."

But with Brazil, under coach Dunga, having qualified for the World Cup finals in South Africa next summer, Alex is determined to force his way into Carlo Ancelotti's team. "I hope now to start to play in the Chelsea games and play very well. He [Dunga] has spoken to me and said: 'I am happy to see you playing again. I hope you start to play well and I will call you to play in the national team again.'

"To go back into the national team is important to me. Also the Chelsea team started very well this season, is at the top, and this season to win the Premier League is important to me. Now I want to play."

Ancelotti said: "I am very happy Alex has signed a new contract. I am familiar with all of his fantastic qualities, so I am delighted he will be with us for another four years."

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