On this day in 1987 Liverpool midfielder, and cult hero, Lucas Leiva was born.
Lucas began his career at Brazilian club Grêmio where he played as a box-to-box midfielder making 38 appearances in the league and scoring 4 goals. His performances for Grêmio were enough for a host of top European clubs to take an interest in the young Brazilian but it was Rafael Benitez and Liverpool who eventually signed Lucas in July 2007 for a fee of £5 million.
Since joining the Reds, Lucas has become something of a cult hero at Anfield, anchoring the Liverpool midfield in a total of 324 games across all competitions. Despite being a relatively divisive player among fans, Lucas has played an important part in the Liverpool team for almost a decade, winning the League Cup in 2012 and being awarded the Liverpool player of the year award for the 2010-11 campaign. Having played under 5 different managers during his time at Anfield (Benitez, Hodgson, Dalglish, Rodgers and Klopp) Lucas is currently Liverpool’s longest serving player (as of January 2017) and may well still have a place with the Reds through the coming seasons as an experienced member of the Liverpool squad.