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Lucas poised for Liverpool return

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers says midfielder Lucas Leiva will make his return from a long-term knee injury two months ahead of schedule.

Lucas, 25, suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury in November, but the speed of his recovery means he is set to play a part in the Anfield club's North American tour.

Liverpool are due to play friendlies against Toronto, Roma and Tottenham, and Rodgers told the club's official tour site: "He'll have some involvement. He's still got some way to go to get back to where he was before the injury, but he's back two months early.

"This is normally a nine-month injury. He's been back in seven, and that's great credit to his work and the work of the medics here.

"He's done very, very well and is working very hard. We can feed him into some of the games and increase his mental capacity to improve, because obviously it was a serious injury."

The Anfield manager hailed Lucas as "a great guy", adding: "He loves his football, loves this club, and he's making great progress.''

Lucas could play in the opening tour game against Toronto on Saturday, when Rodgers does not plan to give any player more than 45 minutes of playing time.

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