Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva is relishing his second chance to impress at Anfield after a dramatic U-turn saw him remain at the club beyond the end of the summer transfer window. Besiktas were interested in a loan move for the Brazil international but Brendan Rodgers called off the deal, after labelling Lucas the best defensive midfielder at the club.
Lucas was left out of the Reds squad for their first two Premier League games of the season, but has started the matches against Arsenal and West Ham United in the absence of injured captain Jordan Henderson. The 28 year old is now set for an extended run in the Reds first team with the England international seemingly no closer to a return.
The former Gremio player is set to make his third appearance of the campaign in the Premier League trip to Manchester United, with Liverpool looking to bounce back from the harrowing defeat to West Ham United before the international break. After what he describes as an "intense" summer, Lucas is delighted to turn his attention to matters on the pitch.
"It was a very intense transfer window but I am happy to be here," he told Sky Sports. "I will always fight for this club [Liverpool] because that is how I feel and this is my home. [Manchester United] is a big game and we know how excited the fans are about this. Both teams arrive more or less in the same situation. Same points, also a lot of signings and a new team. I think it is going to be an interesting game and hopefully we can do well and keep improving."
He added, according to the Liverpool Echo: "It's not been a normal week for us because of the international break. So players come back late and probably we will only get the chance to meet all together [briefly]. A few players just played two days ago so they were in recovery so tomorrow we'll get everyone on the same session and talk through about the game and prepare ourselves."