Lucas Leiva praised ahead of 200th Liverpool appearance
Liverpool first-team coach Mike Marsh has paid tribute to the club's Brazilian midfielder Lucas Leiva, as he approaches his 200th appearance on Monday night.
Lucas, 26, joined Liverpool from Grêmio in 2007 and has overcome a difficult start at the club to become an influential member of the first-team squad.
His perseverence has won admirers from both near and far, with his club now using Lucas as an example to younger players on how to conduct themselves.
The coach told the club's official website: "We all know that Lucas didn't have the easiest of starts to his career at Liverpool, but he responded really well, got himself in the team and was named Player of the Year a couple of seasons ago.
"He picked up a couple of nasty injuries and he's just getting back to his best form now. I didn't realise it was coming up to his 200th appearance, but that's the measure of the man and good luck to him on Monday night.
"He offers us a great deal of stability and he's fantastic at protecting the back four. We also realise he is an offensive player when he's on the ball and picks out some great passes. He's balancing the side out quite nicely at the moment."
Source: Liverpool FC