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Lucas Leiva hoping to provide Liverpool teammate Allen with 'free role'

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Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva believes his return to first-team action can free up teammate Joe Allen to play in a more attacking role.

Lucas, 24, made his long-awaited comeback from a thigh injury in the Reds' 1-0 home win over Southampton on Saturday.

The Brazilian believes his Welsh midfield counterpart, who was signed by Brendan Rodgers from Swansea this summer, will now be free to contribute more in the attacking third of the pitch.

Lucas said: "I didn't have that much time to work with Joe on the pitch because he came towards the end of the pre-season and afterwards I was injured.

"But we could see Joe getting forward to join the attack and create chances - that's what he used to do at Swansea so he feels very comfortable there knowing that we will always be behind the ball and trying to cover.

"I hope I can help in this way to give freedom for him. Stevie [Gerrard], [Jordan] Henderson, [Nuri] Sahin and Jonjo [Shelvey]. That's my job and I'm delighted to be able to help again."

Next up for Liverpool is a trip to Udinese on Thursday for their second-leg Europa League clash, where Lucas will be looking to build on his comeback.

The midfielder's recent injury means he has missed out on nomination for the Samba Gold trophy, but you can click here to vote for who you believe to be the best Brazilian in European football this year.


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