By Tom J Doyle
If you can't beat them, buy them. That seems to be the philosophy of Jose Mourinho, who has signed two of the Atletico Madrid stars who ruthlessly dispatched his Chelsea side from the Champions League semi-finals last season.
With Diego Costa having completed his £35 million move to Stamford Bridge, Filipe Luis is the latest Atleti man to arrive at Stamford Bridge
Diego Simeone prepared for Luis's departure by signing Guilherme Siqueira from Benfica but the left-back's exit will be a bitter pill for Atleti to swallow after such a stunning 2013-14 campaign.
The Brazilian was a key figure for the club last season as they won La Liga, playing 32 times in a back line that conceded just 26 goals en route to the title, edging out Real Madrid and Barcelona despite a far inferior budget.
The defender won 82 tackles in the Primera Division in 2013-14, with his no-nonsense approach on the floor and in the air allied with calm distribution - achieving an 80 per cent pass completion rate - typifying Simeone's ruthless, physical technicality.
Luis began his career at Brazilian club Figueirense before making a switch to Ajax in 2004 and was then snapped up by Real Madrid in 2005. The defender spent the season with their B-team, however, and was then snapped up by Deportivo in 2006, establishing himself as first choice during 2007-08 following Joan Capdevila's departure.
Having returned to action just four months after a devastating leg injury in 2010, Luis impressed Simeone enough to earn a move to the Estadio Vicente Calderon that summer.
|2/1||Chelsea are 2/1 with Bet365 to win the 2014-15 Premier League title|
"Last season, Luis was one of the top defenders in La Liga in his position," he enthuses. "The Brazilian has reached the very peak of his game after arriving from Deportivo and has been an irreplaceable player for Simeone.
"Atletico offered him an improved contract but he seems to have decided that Stamford Bridge is the place to be."
Having won the title and reached the final of the Champions League with Atleti, only to see Chelsea begin to pick off key players, Luis seems to have decided that a new challenge lies ahead - and the move certainly works for the Blues.
Cesar Azpilicueta - a right-back by trade - ousted Ashley Cole, now of Roma, from his role on the left last term but is understood to favour playing on his natural flank, while Ryan Bertrand was loaned out to Aston Villa after becoming desperate for playing time.
With one eye on Financial Fair Play regulations, a move for Luke Shaw - who made a big money switch to Manchester United - proved prohibitive for Mourinho, despite the 18-year-old's fine form for Southampton and boyhood allegiance to Chelsea.
At 28 and with a wealth of experience, Luis is the right age and the right price for Chelsea and could make the left-back position at Stamford Bridge his own. He may not necessarily be a long-term solution in the mould of Shaw but Mourinho rarely looks beyond the present when building title-winning sides.
If the Brazilian can adapt to life in England quickly then Mourinho will have filled in another piece of the jigsaw as he attempts to recreate the muscular dominance of his early Chelsea teams.
Luis may not have been selected for the World Cup by Luis Felipe Scolari but make no mistake - Chelsea are signing an absolute gem of a player, as Atleti fans can painfully attest.
Despite Mourinho's tempestuous time in Spain with Madrid, he is using his experience to target the best of the Primera Division's talent to ply their trade in London - and Luis looks like a promising addition.