Players outbound from Anfield are usually linked at least once if not a dozen times with a final destination somewhere in Italy. Napoli is the usual club connected with Liverpool players, for obvious reasons related to former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez, but with Napoli languishing midtable in Serie A and questions about Rafa's longevity at the club being raised, other Italian clubs have stepped up to fill the gap in the rumours.
This time it's Inter Milan, a club managed by Mario Balotelli's former father figure Roberto Mancini. Aside from this, there is zero lazy connection to Liverpool, making it harder to write off rumours about a player departing for the continent. That, and the fact that Mancini himself has actually talked about his interest in Lucas.
"Lucas is a great player but he is a Liverpool player and it will be hard to get him," Mancini said when asked about a laundry list of players he might bring in to his club. "It certainly would be useful to us as he could help our youngsters grow."
Mancini seems… purposely obtuse about the difficulty level in acquiring Lucas' services. Although Liverpool have looked better recently when the Brazilian has been in the side, Lucas has only started six matches in the league so far this season and made 14 appearances total across all competitions. These are hardly the stats of a player who can't be pried away from his current club for the right price, although this isn't to say Liverpool are in a position to happily lose the midfielder at the moment.
If he can stake a claim in the side amidst Brendan Rodgers' current tactical preferences, there may be hope for Lucas yet. But after a summer spent as the subject of departure rumours, it might not be that surprising to see Lucas depart in January, no matter how little depth exists at his position.