Lucas Please Dont Leiva
Since his arrival on Merseyside young Lucas Leiva has been anything but loved by most if not all Liverpool fans. Rafael Benitez however, never faltered in his belief in the young Brazilian and Leiva has never bowed out to the criticism of the fans. Always wanting to win them over, he has crept his way in to many fans hearts this season as he continues to show his obvious talent.
Many forget that in his debut season for the Reds he was the first Brazilian to ever score for the club. Not to bad for someone that at the time was only 20 and had the weight of the world of expectations on his shoulders. For years he has been loathed by fans, but he never lost his faith, and never lost his drive to win over the Anfield faithful.
However, this season truly has many fans on the verge of conversion as his displays in midfield throughout the campaign have been steeped with promise. He was originally signed from Gremio for a fee of 5 Million Pounds and was generally used as an attacking midfielder. During most of his time at Liverpool since his arrival he has been used more as a holding midfielder.
The departure of Xabi Alonso last season left Lucas perhaps the biggest set of boots to fill aside from Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres at the time, and Lucas stepped up having arguably his best season as a Red as he was voted Young Player of the Season by his club and fans after making 39 total appearances.
This season has shown his growth in both composure and understanding of the English game as he has been the heartbeat of the Liverpool Midfield all season despite the departure of Javier Mascherano and the constant reshuffling of the Reds central area around Steven Gerrard's nagging injuries. Lucas has 24 League Appearances this campaign only behind Reina, Skrtel, and Meireles for most games started in the league. He also has picked up the only Red Card of the season as proof of having to but in some of the grunt work that Mascherano left on the table in his departure for Barcelona.Continued on the next page