Speculation has grown in the last 24 hours about Lucas Leiva‘s future, and Brendan Rodgers is reportedly facing a “dilemma” on the idea of selling the 28-year-old.
Liverpool correspondent Chris Bascombe writes in the Telegraph that Liverpool will have to withstand a bid from Inter for the services of the Brazilian.
Bascombe writes: “The player certainly would have welcomed such interest in the summer, and even though he has worked his way back into the first team he will have a long-term view on where his future lies”
Tony Barrett of the Times echoed that sentiment, and highlighted the fact that Rodgers has the tricky decision of whether to sanction the sale or not.
The Northern Irishman reportedly has to decide whether he feels he would have sufficient depth within his squad without the 28-year-old, which is more than debatable.
Dominic King in the Daily Mail writes: “Had Inter shown their interest in the summer, Rodgers would not have stood in his way but the situation is not straightforward now as Lucas, who has two-and-a-half years left on his Anfield contract, has been a key figure in helping stabilise Liverpool’s results.”
— Telegraph Football (@TeleFootball) January 9, 2015
Not only has Lucas enjoyed a resurgence this season, bringing much-needed defensive cover to the midfield, but Rodgers also has nobody else like him.
Steven Gerrard has shown his defensive flaws and needs to be played further up the pitch, Joe Allen has struggled with both form and injury, Jordan Henderson is more effective in a box-to-box role and Emre Can has been thriving at centre-back.
Selling Lucas this month would only make sense if Rodgers brings in a replacement defensive midfielder. If he allows him to leave and buys nobody, it could prove fatal to Liverpool’s chances of a top-four finish and a trophy.