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Luiz has hit the ground running for the Gunners (Picture: Getty Images)

Arsenal defender David Luiz has revealed he is looking forward to a ‘very special’ return to his former club Benfica before he hangs up his boots.

The experienced centre-back was given his break in European football by the Portuguese club in 2007, before moving on to Chelsea in 2011.

The 33-year-old has been a key part of Arsenal’s revival under Mikel Arteta following a difficult start to his Gunners career after his summer move from Chelsea.

Former Manchester City coach Arteta admitted he can see the Brazil international becoming a manager in the future, but that might not be at a Premier League club.

Luiz told SporTV: ‘I never lost my connection with Benfica, I have that in my heart, everybody knows I want to come back.

‘I want to wear the Benfica shirt again and feel that sensation. The day I come back to the Estadio da Luz it is going to be very special, one of the greatest feelings of my life.’

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Luiz broke through at Benfica (Picture: Getty Images)

Luiz has claimed league titles in England, France and Portugal, and the Champions League with Chelsea in 2012, but was initially hesitant to depart the club that handed him his first opportunity to shine.

He added: ‘I was scared to leave Benfica, scared to start a new story.

‘So Rui [Costa], the director of football, pulled me aside and talked to me. I was scared to bring my story at Benfica to a close, my love and the pleasure I had for living in that country and playing for Benfica.

‘I told [Costa], ‘I don’t want to go, I want to stay, I want to stay.’ Rui told me something that touched my heart: ‘The doors will always be open for you. You need to show off your football to the whole world.”

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