Lucas Leiva has given Brendan Rodgers a major boost by declaring he is fit and ready to return to first-team action as he targets club glory and the 2014 FIFA World Cup with Brazil.
The 27-year-old last featured in a senior game as a substitute during the Reds’ pulsating 2-2 draw with Aston Villa at Anfield on Jan. 18.
Lucas suffered a knee ligament injury in that short cameo, but he returned to play the full 90 minutes as the U-21s won 2-0 at West Ham United on Friday.
“It was really good for me to get going again and try to improve my fitness,” Lucas told LiverpoolFC.com. “I was lucky that I wasn’t out for a long time, and I’m now looking forward to first-team action. Hopefully I’ll be able to help the team again for the next 10 games, because we know how important they are.
“I felt really good after the game, and I’m looking forward to the next two months.”
With the dream of representing his country in the World Cup finals on home turf, Liverpool’s No. 21 is desperate to make Luiz Felipe Scolari’s squad for the tournament.
To achieve that goal, Lucas knows he first faces a fight to regain a regular berth in Rodgers’ starting 11. However, he insists he has no doubts that he will be back stronger than ever.
“It’s a massive two months for me, especially looking towards the World Cup at the end of the season as well, so I can’t afford to miss many more games,” he said. “I knew the injury wasn’t too bad. I knew something happened, but of course I was disappointed I wouldn’t be able to make the last international game.
“When you are out of the international team and squad, there is always someone else who will have a chance to impress. The competition for places in the Brazil squad is so big, so that’s why I’m really confident that if I have a good two months ahead then I will have a chance to play at the World Cup.
“That would be like a dream for me — playing for my country in Brazil. It’s going to be massive, but as I said, what I do for Liverpool is what’s going to get me in the Brazil squad, so I’ve just got to concentrate on the next 10 games and hopefully help Liverpool to do good things until the end of the season.
“Injuries aren’t good, but they can happen, and probably 90 percent of the team have had some injury during the season, so unfortunately for me, it didn’t come at a good time, but I’m back, and I’m sure I will be at the same level that I was before.”
Photo via LiverpoolFC.com
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