Lucas Moura has revealed he was overjoyed to see close friend David Luiz quit Chelsea and join Arsenal this summer – even if it strengthened Tottenham’s arch rivals.
The controversial deadline day transfer saw Luiz switch allegiances in London and swap blue for red ahead of the new season.
Unai Emery welcomed the chance to link back up with Luiz, who he managed at PSG as well as Tottenham winger Moura.
This coming Sunday, Moura and Luiz will have to put their friendship to one side as they go head-to-head in the north London derby.
Arsenal host Spurs at the Emirates Stadium and want to inflict more misery on Mauricio Pochettino’s men following their shock 1-0 home defeat to Newcastle.
The Gunners also lost in the Premier League at the weekend, though, as Liverpool prevailed 3-1 winners at Anfield.
Luiz had a difficult evening on Merseyside as Mohamed Salah tormented the Brazilian, highlighting why Frank Lampard had decided he would not be in Chelsea’s first XI this season.
Arsenal’s desperation for a centre-half saw them spend £8m on the 32-year-old, but Moura is predicting his pal will bounce back quickly.
Ahead of the north London derby, Moura told The London Evening Standard: “David is a very experienced player and knows how to go through this situation (being blamed for Liverpool defeat). He will be stronger very soon.
“I am happy for him because it was a good transfer for him to make.
“I am also happy because he is closer to me now. He can come visit me at my home easier because when he was at Chelsea, he was so far away!
“But on Sunday he will be my opponent, I will work and do the best for my team to get three points.
“On the pitch (out relationship) is different. It doesn’t matter who the opponent is, I need to do my best and try to win.
“Was I surprised he left Chelsea for Arsenal? That’s football. Anything can happen.
“Of course it is not normal because the two clubs face each other every year in a derby. Chelsea fans are not happy.
“But everyone needs to do their choice and they need to respect them.”
Luiz will have to keep a close eye on Moura on Sunday, with both players likely to start the north London derby.
Moura scored at Manchester City in Tottenham’s 2-2 draw at the Etihad in their second Premier League game of the season.
Luiz, meanwhile, had shone for Arsenal in their 2-1 win over Burnley prior to the Liverpool slip up.
Chelsea have looked vulnerable at the back since Luiz’s departure too, having conceded seven goals in three matches with Kurt Zouma partnering Andreas Christensen at the back for the Blues.