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Senior Liverpool star close to first team return, plays 45 minutes

By Dominic Toner

Lucas returned to action with Liverpool’s Under-23 side on Friday night against Arsenal.

The 29-year-old midfielder was named in the starting 11 alongside the club’s talented youngsters, and played 45 minutes as he continues his recovery from an injury suffered in pre-season.

Liverpool were winning the game 2-0 at half-time after two goals from Ben Woodburn.

Lucas picked up a hamstring injury during a friendly with Huddersfield and has missed the start of Liverpool’s season.

It looked like he would be leaving Liverpool earlier in the summer. The Mirror claimed that Turkish side Galatasaray believed they had secured the terms of a transfer for Lucas before Jurgen Klopp cancelled the deal at the eleventh hour.

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The report said that the German boss prevented the move from going through after concerns he would not have enough cover if there were more injuries in his squad.

The Brazilian holding midfielder arrived at Liverpool back in 2007 under Rafa Benitez and is the longest serving player in the current squad.

Lucas made 27 appearances last season in all competitions, six of them from the bench, and picked up the club’s player of the month for February.

He has made 315 appearances in all competitions for the Merseyside club and his most successful season to date came in 2010/11 season when he was named the club’s player of the year.

Lucas will remain at Anfield this summer and fight for a place in the starting 11, with senior players Emre Can, Jordan Henderson, James Milner, Georginio Wijnaldum and Adam Lallana in his way.

In other Liverpool team news, Stan Collymore has predicted the result of the league match against Tottenham.