Former Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva has admitted that he chose Lazio above many other clubs this summer. The Brazil international had been linked with the likes of AC Milan, Newcastle United and Gremio during the transfer window before he decided to link up with the Rome-based outfit.
Leiva spent 10 seasons with Liverpool, where they were mostly in a transition phase, and he thereby did not get the chance to celebrate the success achieved prior to his arrival. Overall, the Brazilian made 344 appearances for Liverpool across all competitions, while bagging seven goals in the process.
Speaking in his press conference, the 30-year-old admitted that he is honoured to play for Lazio, who will be plying their trade in the Europa League next season.
“I am very honoured to be here and was given a warm welcome by the squad. I’ve been in Rome for only a few weeks, but found a group that is very supportive and helpful I chose to come to Lazio above many other offers, including at AC Milan. I have the chance to play in Europe here and many players spoke highly of the environment. After many years in England, I chose to come to Italy and will do all I can to impress,” said the Brazilian in his Press conference.
Leiva won just the League Cup during his decade-long career with Liverpool, but he has already got off the mark with Lazio following their thrilling 3-2 win over Juventus in the Italian Super Cup. At just 30, Leiva will be hoping to cement himself as a regular for Lazio, where he will take up the position left by former skipper Lucas Biglia.
The Brazil international had the option of staying put at Liverpool for the final year of his contract, but the strong competition urged him to pursue a fresh club where he would be considered as an integral part of the first XI.
However, even with Leiva Lazio are far from favourites for the league, with Juventus once again the expert’s tip for the title despite massive investments from both Inter Milan as well as AC Milan. Juventus are just 3-1 with NetBet, and shorter with some other bookmakers. Both Milan clubs have invested massively in order to get back to their former glory and will be looking forward to denying the Turin club from clinching a seventh league title.
Juventus still have the best squad and that they have brought in some new players such as Blaise Matuidi and Douglas Costa to strengthen the team.
AC Milan, on the other hand, has signed no fewer than five players which include the likes of Leonardo Bonucci and Franck Kessie among others. AC Milan is desperate to get back to its former glory and together with Inter Milan established the top three as it was in the past. However, there is no guarantee that spending money will guarantee you success. Inter Milan invested massively last season, and they only managed to finish 7th in the league, prompting the owners to sack Frank de Boer at the head of the team.
Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon is excited about the new season and that that the team is confident that they can win the title. He said that it is a good thing that the Milan clubs have strengthened during the summer as this will improve the level of competition in the league.
He stated that this will be the last season of his career and that he will be glad if he could finish it with a title. Gianluigi Buffon said that the players had been disappointed to lose the Champions League final against Real Madrid and they will be looking forward to trying and win it this year. He believes that the players are more experienced this time around and that they can make it.