Liverpool have not, as has been reported by a number of the national newspapers over the last 24 hours, put midfielder Lucas Leiva on the transfer list. However, we are, as we suggested yesterday, willing to listen to offers for the long-serving midfielder, who was left out of the match-day squad against Stoke on Sunday.
It seems unlikely that the Reds would subject the Brazilian, a loyal servant to the club over the years, to the same fate as teammates Mario Balotelli, Fabio Borini and Jose Enrique – who are all reportedly up for sale and being made to train with the reserves as they seek out new clubs (via The Guardian).
Indeed, Brendan Rodgers is open to keeping Lucas – the only out-and-out holding midfield player in our squad – as a bit-part squad option, but is well aware that the 28-year-old is unlikely to be enthused by such as role.
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As Sky Sports suggest, his departure is very much dependent on what offers – if any – are put on the table. Inter Milan were heavily linked with the player back in January (via Daily Mirror), but it remains to be seen whether they’d be interested in making a renewed approach.
According to talkSPORT, Inter would only be interested in a loan deal at this stage, with the option for a permanent buy in a year’s time. That could give hope to Napoli, who are also linked by the radio giants.
Whatever the eventual outcome, it’s a sad end for Liverpool’s longest serving player – a record he holds following the summer departure of Steven Gerrard. Lucas, originally signed back in 2007, is closing in on 300 appearances for the club in all competitions and is now in his ninth season at the club.
Unfortunately for him, with Emre Can and Joe Allen both capable of playing in his position, and with Jordan Henderson and James Milner always likely to be occupying two of the three midfield positions, his chances are inevitably going to become few and far between as the year goes by.
We hope that a speedy resolution can be found. He deserves that much at least.