Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva has revealed how he could have left the club in the summer, but the Reds opted to turn down offers for the 29-year-old.
The tenacious Brazilian is currently the club’s longest-serving player after joining from Gremio in 2007 during Rafa Benitez’s time in charge of Liverpool.
However, game time has been hard to come by since Jurgen Klopp took charge of the Reds, with Lucas featuring in just two league games this season – one of them coming off the bench.
The defensive midfielder is still seen as a vital part of the squad due to his experience and devotion to the club, but he admits that a move away from Merseyside was close during the summer.
“There really were a few exit opportunities, they ended up not happening. Liverpool didn’t feel comfortable to seal a deal,” Lucas told ESPN Brasil.
“For the time I’ve been here, I respected the club and stayed for another year, for this season, starting my tenth season for the club, which is a very cool landmark.”
Lucas was heavily linked with a number of Turkish clubs, in particular Galatasaray who confirmed on a number of occasions they were pursuing the midfielder over the summer.
However, it appears Klopp is a fan of the midfielder, despite that not being evident so far this season.