Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva believes team-mate Luis Suarez will stay at the club – despite reported interest from Bayern Munich.
Suarez has hit 25 goals in all competitions this season for a side who have not been in the Premier League’s top six at any stage, and whose last chance of a trophy disappeared a week ago with their exit from the Europa League.
The Uruguay international’s stellar displays have been the highlight of a frustrating season at Anfield, leading to speculation that he may move on this summer in search of Champions League football. Suarez, though, signed a new long-term contract last August, and stated at the beginning of February that he was “very happy” at Anfield.
And midfielder Lucas feels sure that the 26-year-old forward will still be a Liverpool player next season.
“After the season Luis is having I’m sure there will be a lot of speculation, that is bound to happen,” Lucas told the Liverpool Echo.
“At the end of the day it will be his decision and the club’s decision. But what I know from Luis is that he’s happy, he’s comfortable and his confidence is high.”
Lucas believes that Suarez’s performances this season should earn him the PFA Player of the Year award. The Liverpool striker would appear to be in a battle with Tottenham winger Gareth Bale and Manchester United forward Robin van Persie for the prize, which will be awarded in April to the player who receives the most votes from their fellow professionals.
“Luis will certainly be challenging for that award,” Lucas said. “It has been such an amazing season for him. He has been scoring a lot of goals and showing everyone all the qualities he has. I just hope he wins because I think he deserves it after everything he has done this season.
"I think it’s going to be between Luis, Van Persie and Bale. All three have performed really well and have scored a lot of goals. But we hope Luis has got the luck to win it. He has been so important for us and is a special player. It’s just so good to have him in our team. We just hope he can continue playing at this level and scores many more goals before the end of the season.”