Thiago Silva: I could stay at Chelsea for longer than a year
The Blues defender is backing himself to earn a contract extension at Stamford Bridge and adapt to the English culture quickly
Thiago Silva only has a 12-month at Chelsea with an option for another year, but he is backing himself to earn a second season in west London.
On his 36th birthday, the free signing from Paris Saint-Germain was unveiled to the British media ahead of his debut on Wednesday night against Barnsley in the Carabao Cup.
The defender is one of six signings to join Chelsea this summer in a combined round of spending at £220 million ($280m), with Rennes goalkeeper Edouard Mendy having conducted his medical on Tuesday.
Ahead of his debut, Silva is backing himself to earn that extension on his contract to help him compete at the World Cup in 2022 with Brazil.
“I think when you get to a certain age, the tendency is that you sign this type of contract and at times there are maybe doubts and, like with me and the expectations of Chelsea, that is to be expected," he said.
“But I have no doubt that I will give everything, do my best and will contribute. I am prepared to work really hard in everything I do. I love football; I love preparation. It’s not a case of preparing on Friday for Saturday; my type of preparation goes way back.
“I’m totally relaxed about the contract and whether Chelsea will want to renew it or not, I don’t know, if I haven’t met expectations or contributed then we’ll sit down and talk about that. But I’m not worried at all.
“I will do my best possible and really contribute to this team, this new project. I’ve accepted this new challenge; it’s going to be really good for me. Everyone knows that my ambition is to pay in the World Cup in two years’ time when I’ll be 38. That’s a great responsibility."
The Blues defender did his press conference in Portuguese ahead of his debut, a month on from his final game with PSG in the Champions League final defeat to Bayern Munich. Silva went onto discuss his inability to speak English as he aims to stamp his leadership skills onto Frank Lampard's group of players.
“In relation to not speaking English, it’s going to be difficult, it always is with a new language, but you are speaking to someone who speaks Italian, French and Spanish and Portuguese," he continued.
"The tendency when you learn some languages, others come easier. I am going to learn English as quickly as possible. It’s quite uncomfortable for me, being here, giving this interview with someone else interpreting for me so I would like to give interviews in English soon. I’m studying Monday to Friday to speak English.
"With regard to leadership, anyone who has played football knows a little about communication, knows it’s a mix, it’s a similar language so looking at the basic of the basic terms and words - tracking back, changing sides - you prioritise the important words to look at and focus.
“The other players speak a lot of other languages as well and the players that we have are of an incredibly high, technical quality and can differentiate intelligence which is essential in football."
Indeed, it is Lampard who is excited to see Silva link up with his new teammates after a season of defensive issues and provide some leadership to his backline.
Lampard said: "Thiago Silva is, as I see it, a leader and I spoke to lots of people that have worked with him before he came, out of interest to find out if what he looked like from afar was true, and everybody said the same thing: his absolute commitment to being a winner, to help his teammates, to improving all the time.
"It's about how you train and your actions and the first week he's been with us - even though he doesn't speak the language well - he gives off the feeling of someone who will affect people around him, organise people around him and drive the team.
"That's certainly something we needed. We have good, experienced players we have a fantastic captain at this club in Azpilicueta but someone like Thiago will massively help in terms how they hold themselves day to day and how players around them look up to them."