On 24 May 2011, Lucas Pezzini Leiva or simply known as Lucas, was Liverpool’s Player of the Season. Now, if you are not a football fan, you may ask what is so special about this. Every season in every club of any professional game, they will be a player that stands above his teammates. But Liverpool FC is no ordinary football club and Lucas is no ordinary footballer.
Signed from Gremio of Brazil on 26 July 2007, he arrived in Liverpool as a 21 year old and the youngest player to be given the Bola de Ouro or Golden Ball as the best player in the Compeonato Brasilero. No mean feat considering legends such Zico, Falcao and Romario are among the winners.
You would expect the best player in the Brazilian football league to easily take the English League by storm. That did not happen. After a fairly average first season with Liverpool, Lucas endured a horrible second season. Repeatedly booed by home fans and heavily criticised by the British media, Lucas’ game dropped, but only temporarily.
He returned to pre-season training 0n 2009/2010, not only more determined but physically tougher. And from that day onwards Lucas has kept on improving and along the way won over Liverpool fans and slayed his critics. Today he is pivotal to his club and country and is tipped to be a future captain of both. Lucas has come a long way. Here is an article about his journey.
It is not easy when you are 21 years of age and publicly ridiculed. It takes mental toughness and self-confidence to keep believing in yourself and working towards your goals.And if you find yourself in such a situation, remember Lucas.