Liverpool star pens new long-term deal

Liverpool news: Lucas Leiva commits future to Reds

Pete South
Published 04/10/2013 17:13 by Pete South, read by 4,251 people.

Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva has penned a new long-term contract with the club.

The Brazilian arrived at Anfield from Gremio in 2007 and has since made over 200 appearances, scoring six goals in the process. 

"It's another long-term contract that I have signed - but it was the same feeling as when I first came here," the 26-year-old said after putting pen to paper.

"I am really delighted to have the opportunity to play for this club. It's where I think I belong and where I wanted to stay, so I am very happy and looking forward to a few more years here.

"It was an easy decision because after the long period of my career I have had here, I would like to give the best of my time to this club. It was not a difficult decision to make and I am really looking forward to what will hopefully be a few more years with a lot of success."

Lucas has become central figure in the Liverpool team under new boss Brendan Rodgers, but injury has hampered his progress in recent seasons.

A knee injury picked up against Chelsea in November 2011 ended his campaign early while this term a thigh injury kept him sidelined for three months.

Despite his problems the combative midfielder remains a fan favourite, and Ian Ayre said he was delighted to have tied Lucas down with a long-term deal.

"It's fantastic. He has been such a great servant to the club and I think during the period he went through with his two injuries, he put so much work into it and the club supported him through it.

"He just goes from strength to strength. We said throughout last summer and January, we wanted to keep our best, experienced players, and this is another great example of that.

"The manager has said several times that as well as having a great, young squad, it's important we have experience and it's important we have characters. People like Lucas fit that.

"He'll tell you he's still very young, but in footballing terms he's experienced and a big part of the team."

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