Now I’m sure that we are all aware of the words of one Mr Wenger as of late, declaring that his striker Eduardo has been on the receiving end of a “witch hunt” against him. However whilst we may be amused at all this, we must also look inside our own club and see that we have had our very own witch hunt happening for quite some time now. I am talking about the treatment that “fans” are giving to our number 21, Lucas Leiva.
For what now is years, I have been saying that Lucas is a talented lad, clearly you don’t win awards for being a good footballer in Brazil if you don’t have talent. And yet it is also rather clear that young mister Leiva has been the very definition of a scapegoat at out club. And I must say that the treatment he gets at Anfield is shockingly poor. Our prestigious captain Steven Gerrard, no doubt the greatest centre midfielder in the world today – should he misplace a pass, the Anfield crowd perhaps tut and move on at the very most. However for Lucas, it is a much different situation.
He is berated with a sea of boos and jeers. And to what good? Does this really help him improve and step up his game? Surly a club such as ourselves who take pride in having the most intelligent fans in the world in terms of footballing know how… We must see that abusing one of footballs rising stars is not the way forward, it is in fact, an embarrassment to the name of out football club. If you happen to be one of the people who set out to give Lucas grief, trying to force him out of the club, then I say perhaps you should be the one to pack your bags and leave.
In terms of Lucas’ general gameplay, it is my opinion that he has been consistently solid in the position he plays. He rarely tries any funny business, and is able to play the simple ball. Recently people say that he is not as good as Xabi Alonso. However it is rather clear that Lucas has been instructed to play it simple, and it is also clear that Javier Mascherano is in fact the one that is taking on Alonso’s distributing role in the mini-absence of Alberto Aquilani’s injury. So in order to clear things up, Lucas Leiva is not Xabi Alonso, nor will he ever be. They are different players with different playing styles and should not be compared, without running the risk of draining more prestige from the supposed “intelligence” that we as Liverpool fans are meant to have.
So this is not a lengthy article by no means, nor is it a debate, it is simply a statement and indeed a call out. For anyone who knocks Lucas. A man who clearly wants to succeed here, a man who could have joined any of the top clubs in the world when he was at Gremio but chose us instead, a man who has Brazilian national football credentials.
He deserves a chance, I have given it to him from the very start, and I implore everyone else to do so, because without the support of the 12th man, Lucas can never fully reach the potential that he so clearly has.