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Former Red Lucas Leiva Forced to Step Away from Football due to Health

An irregular heartbeat has forced Lucas, who had returned to boyhood club Gremio, to at least temporarily step away from football.

Liverpool v Middlesbrough - Premier League Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

After a professional career that began at Gremio before he moved to Liverpool in 2007 and Lazio in 2017, Brazilian midfielder Lucas Leiva returned to his boyhood club in the summer of 2022 with the 35-year-old signing a one-year deal.

However, with Lucas and Gremio in the midst of pre-season for the 2023 Brasileiro Série A this week, a scan revealed an irregular heartbeat which will force Lucas to step back from football at least temporarily to undergo treatment for the issue.

Further exams will be required to reveal the extent of the issue and determine a course for treatment, but the player and club are hopeful that he will be able to play football again and that this issue will not force Lucas’ retirement from the game.

Lucas remains a highly popular former Liverpool player, a cult figure who at first struggled to find his role in English football but who persevered and for a time was amongst the game’s top holding midfielders before injuries took their toll.

Across ten seasons in Red, Lucas made 346 appearances and took home a winner’s medal for the 2012 League Cup. With Gremio he won Serie B in 2005 and Campeonato Gaucho in 2006 and 2007. With Lazio he won the Coppa Italia in 2019.

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