After completing the entire 90-minutes as the Liverpool reserves downed West Ham United’s famous academy with an empathic 2-0 win, Lucas is glad to be back on the pitch and is looking forward to the run in to the end of the season as he targets a spot in the Brazilian national team for this summer’s World Cup in his home country.
“It was really good for me to get going again and try to improve my fitness” Lucas told the official website in the build-up to Sunday’s trip to Old Trafford. “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.” If the 27-year old wants to get a phone call from Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari, he’s going to have to get back in the first team real quick.
Reds boss Brendan Rodgers will be buoyed by the news that the defensive minded pair will be available for selection; with his side shipping goals far too easily, a little bit of stability is exactly what the Anfield outfit need. With a mere ten matches left in the season, Liverpool are approaching make or break time with top four rivals Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea and Manchester City all set to test their resolve before the campaign closes out in the middle of May.
The Scouse youngster, who is enjoying not only an extended run in the first team, but keeping experienced fullback Glen Johnson from playing in his preferred position, has admitted yet again that the Anfield outfit have dream of finishing at the top of the table. After finishing seventh in Rodgers first season in charge, jumping to the top of the heap would be completely unprecedented – something that doesn’t concern Flanagan one bit.
With a tough group ahead of them, Roy Hodgson’s men face a challenge to even get to the knockout stages and Gerrard, who also moonlights as the captain of the Three Lions, thinks that getting the right result against Italy in their opening fixture could be the key to seeing them through. “It’s slightly different as it was in the knockout stages we met Italy last time, but of course we want the right result, which is ideally a win” said the 32-year old when asked if their last meeting with the Italians will add to their motivation. “But I think if we avoid defeat in the first game it will set us up nicely for the rest of the group.”
Wow, there’s been a whole lot of talk about Pepe Reina lately; despite flying under the radar for much of the season while on loan in Italy, with the season winding down, the Spaniard is making a lot of noise — and not all of it has been good.
Although Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has more of less ruled out the 31-year old ever playing for the Reds again, Reina has refused to rule out a return to Merseyside this summer if things don’t work out at Napoli — though he hopes to stay on the continent with “the bestest manager ever” Rafa Benitez. There’s been quite a few suitors rumoured with a move for the shot stopper, but the Napoli manager has remained coy on the ‘keepers future.
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