There are reports today that Lucas Leiva may be ready to leave Liverpool this summer in a bid to get a place in the Brazil national team for the 2010 World Cup. I am not the biggest fan of Lucas. When we signed him from Gremio he came with a lot of expectations. After all he was named player of the year in Brazil. But I have rarely seen glimpses of fine form from the young Brazilian. I thought maybe he needed some time to adjust to life in England and get used to our style of play but he has had 2 full seasons now and still I am not convinced he has what it takes to be a star for us.
The reason he may leave us in the summer is that he wants to get regular first team football. Fair enough, you need to be playing well and regularly for your club if you want to play for your country. I am sure Lucas would command a regular starting place in most of the teams in the Premiership outside the top 4.
For me, only one game stands out for me with Lucas, this seasons win at Newcastle. The guy just looked ‘world class’ but that is the sad thing, he has only shone once and it was in a game that virtually the whole team played well. I must say that in this weekends game against Manchester United, Lucas did okay. But yet again, the whole team did well. I want to see Lucas stand out head and shoulders above other players once in a while. I believe the guy has bags of talent, after all he was name Brazil’s best player once upon a time. Maybe now that he has cut his hair he will start playing better!
If Lucas is willing to be part of the squad then I have no problems with him staying with us as we are going to need a lot of depth if we are to challenge for honours next season. But if he wants to leave then I really will not be that sad. I would want us to give Lucas one more season to prove himself and stand up when called upon when Mascherano or Alonso are injured or rested. At times I think it is just a lack of self belief with Lucas, he just needs some va va voom!! He has had enough time now to figure out how the game is played in the Premiership. In Brazil he had acres of space and time on the ball now you get shutdown within seconds. I feel the difference in the pace between the two leagues is what really affected his game.
Come on Lucas! Step up to the plate son and show us what you made of. Rafa has had a lot of faith in you now don’t let him down.